Kia Forum banner
101 - 120 of 174 Posts

·
Registered
2019 Kia Sorento LX V6 AWD
Joined
·
5 Posts
I drive in comfort mode all the time...Towing or not....Just make sure you have the latest Transmission software update from the dealer..Before the uprade the shifting was a bit eratic while towing...The update fixed that problem.Now the car shifts very smoothly while towing or not...I was unaware of the update existed..After complaining about the problem they did some reasearch and found there was an update software to the modualator Valve on the Transmission...
 

·
Registered
2019 KIA Sorento LX V6 AWD
Joined
·
61 Posts
I drive in comfort mode all the time...Towing or not....Just make sure you have the latest Transmission software update from the dealer..Before the uprade the shifting was a bit eratic while towing...The update fixed that problem.Now the car shifts very smoothly while towing or not...I was unaware of the update existed..After complaining about the problem they did some reasearch and found there was an update software to the modualator Valve on the Transmission...
Hi there, just wanted to confirm a few things: 1. you had erratic shifting only while towing but without towing everything was ok? 2. that there is a Transmission software update for 2019? The reason I'm asking that I have towed a trailer (not too heavy, up to 2500lbs ) and I haven't noticed anything... So, just wondering if it worth of updating Transmission software..., just in case? Looks like I have the some model 2019 LX V6.
 

·
Registered
2019 Kia Sorento LX V6 AWD
Joined
·
5 Posts
Erratic shifting was a problem i found on the kia forum for the sorento..In my case not towing mode the transmission gear shifting was rough but not all the time just once in a while we are 2 drivers for this car which drive. In towing mode the transmission was shifting a lot worse..It had problems to upshift causing higher rpms especially going up a hill.Thats why i switched to manual shift which solved the shifting problem while towing.The dealer explained the reason was the kia has a smart transmission which means its able to learn the way you drive in the different modes..Eco,,smart,,comfort,,sport..and the transmission adjusts the shifting accordingly. Since we are 2 drivers the transmission is confused therefore the erratic shifting. Towing made the problem even worse.The modulator valve controls the shifting so the new software upgrade changes the smart transmission parameters to compensate for multi drivers and towing.I would recommend you get that software upgrade if its available for your kia according to the cars vin number. Hope this info helps...W.N
 

·
Registered
2019 KIA Sorento LX V6 AWD
Joined
·
61 Posts
Erratic shifting was a problem i found on the kia forum for the sorento..In my case not towing mode the transmission gear shifting was rough but not all the time just once in a while we are 2 drivers for this car which drive. In towing mode the transmission was shifting a lot worse..It had problems to upshift causing higher rpms especially going up a hill.Thats why i switched to manual shift which solved the shifting problem while towing.The dealer explained the reason was the kia has a smart transmission which means its able to learn the way you drive in the different modes..Eco,,smart,,comfort,,sport..and the transmission adjusts the shifting accordingly. Since we are 2 drivers the transmission is confused therefore the erratic shifting. Towing made the problem even worse.The modulator valve controls the shifting so the new software upgrade changes the smart transmission parameters to compensate for multi drivers and towing.I would recommend you get that software upgrade if its available for your kia according to the cars vin number. Hope this info helps...W.N
Wow, this very interesting and thank you for explaining this it was quite helpful...so, theoretically if I'm only driver it shouldn't be a problem (looks like)... but regardless, I will talk to the dealership if transmission software upgrade is available... Thanks again.
 

·
Registered
2020 Kia Sorento SX, 2013 Hyundai Elantra GT Tech pkg. Former 2014 Kia Rondo EX Luxury,
Joined
·
436 Posts
I wonder if the updated logic for the transmission and specific drivers uses the programmable seat and mirror function to know who is driving?

I would have thought that the 'smart' drive mode would have been the only mode that tries to remember habits, not the other modes.
 

·
Registered
2017 Sorento SX V6 AWD, 2014 Hyundai Santa Fe Sport Turbo, 2002 Honda S2000
Joined
·
43 Posts
Just read the current topic chain and you'll get the answer.
In a couple of words, summarizing I see the next picture:

1. KIA dealers do not recommend to use WDS. They provided this recommendation because:
  • too lazy to contact the manufacturer (KIA)
  • do not want to take responsibility for towing issues.
2. Hitch installers and manufacturers marked hitches as "Not rated for use with weight distribution systems" because:
  • too lazy to get the correct info from the manufacturer (from KIA)
  • do not want to take responsibility for towing issues.
3. KIA provides a response that Sorento can be used with WDS with no problem. I have already posted their official response in the attached pdf in this thread, and not going to repeat it again.
- Here the link: Towing 5000 lbs with the Sorento - Myths and facts
4. Depends on the year of Sorento manufacturing this model has different tow capacity and hitch weight.
- Here the link: Towing 5000 lbs with the Sorento - Myths and facts
5. If your Sorento can tow 5000 lb (by technical data) it doesn't mean you can do it easily...

About the last point. I have the experience to tow by my Sorento the different trailers. At the flat surface, I have pulled the trailer around 4000 weight. I would not say it was very easy for Sorento, but it possible. But that towing shown me that I should not proceed with so heavy trailer anymore for my Sorento. Even a small hill and I had to force the engine...

Problem is, I live in Alberta and I like to travel across the Rocky Mountains. So I looked for a lighter trailer. I bought a very old one (BigFoot B17) and one of the reasons for that was a small trailer weight: 1875lb. In reality, when I loaded this trailer and get a scale on the highway my trailer weight was around 2300 lb. But even with this small weight, when forced mountains sometimes on uphills I had to lower the towering speed to 80, sometimes to 70 kmh.

The official tongue weight of my trailer is 190 lb. With 2 propane tanks and battery, it rising up to 252 lb. And even with this weight, I use WDS, because without WDS the rear of the vehicle goes down pretty low.

Good luck!
Hey, thanks for all of your informative posts here in this thread! I’m a newbie here and at towing. Due to market conditions, I couldn’t find the smaller trailer I want, so had to settle for a bigger Gulfstream Envision 21TBD. Dry weight is 3999 lbs with tongue weight of 460. So this thing is already near the Sorento’s limit when empty!

anyway, so I had a shop installed atf cooler because I don't know how to do that. I also let U-Haul install a hitch because they offer lifetime warranty. I then diy the wireless brake controller and added harbor freight WD hitch w/ sway control.

I was afraid of trailer sway initially because my TT just looks so big compared to the Sorento. However, the Sorento has been amazingly stable and capable even on the freeways. Everything ‘feels’ great and safe…, but I believe the weakest link is probably the tranny. Good thing I monitored the AT temp constantly. If there’s a steady incline for too long, temp would rise and unable to come down. So my solution is to pull over and let it cool down when it approaches 220 and never exceed 240.

I wish I could have a bigger better atf cooler but the shop said Sorento doesn’t have enough room for it…

anyway, here’s what my setup looks like:
119871

I also weighed everything, including wife, kid, 3 cats and gears and 2/3 tank of water:
119872

I believe I’m within all of my legal limits, but I probably should travel with less water for the sake of my tranny…
 

·
Registered
2019 Kia Sorento Ex 3.3L
Joined
·
8 Posts
Good that you have 500 tongue weight capacity. Some Sorentos are only 350. Also Kia Canada said can't use WD hitch but perhaps that's because of the 350lb limit. It's a real mixed bag with Sorento and towing. I notice their new ads only show small trailers. Safe travels.
 

·
Registered
2017 Sorento SX V6 AWD, 2014 Hyundai Santa Fe Sport Turbo, 2002 Honda S2000
Joined
·
43 Posts
Good that you have 500 tongue weight capacity. Some Sorentos are only 350. Also Kia Canada said can't use WD hitch but perhaps that's because of the 350lb limit. It's a real mixed bag with Sorento and towing. I notice their new ads only show small trailers. Safe travels.
Newer Sorentos for sure can't tow 5000 lbs anymore because they don't have the V6 engines anymore.

I really don't understand how some of the older Sorentos with 5000lbs tow capacity can only have a tongue limit of 350. If you have less than 10% tongue weight, that will cause sway! Might as well just take out that 5000 capacity!

Anyway, again, considering today's car and RV market..., even if you do have the money, there's no guarantee that you'll be able to get what you want! Maybe when the market returns to normal, I'll find a better tow vehicle. For now, I'll just go slow and stop and rest and enjoy the view when tranny gets too hot! :p
 

·
Registered
2019 KIA Sorento LX V6 AWD
Joined
·
61 Posts
Good that you have 500 tongue weight capacity. Some Sorentos are only 350. Also Kia Canada said can't use WD hitch but perhaps that's because of the 350lb limit. It's a real mixed bag with Sorento and towing. I notice their new ads only show small trailers. Safe travels.
Actually KIA Canada said, you can use WD hitch... If you read previous comments there is an email attached from KIA CA.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
2017 Kia Sorento SX V6 AWD, Tech Package
Joined
·
36 Posts
Hey, thanks for all of your informative posts here in this thread! I’m a newbie here and at towing. Due to market conditions, I couldn’t find the smaller trailer I want, so had to settle for a bigger Gulfstream Envision 21TBD. Dry weight is 3999 lbs with tongue weight of 460. So this thing is already near the Sorento’s limit when empty!

anyway, so I had a shop installed atf cooler because I don't know how to do that. I also let U-Haul install a hitch because they offer lifetime warranty. I then diy the wireless brake controller and added harbor freight WD hitch w/ sway control.

I was afraid of trailer sway initially because my TT just looks so big compared to the Sorento. However, the Sorento has been amazingly stable and capable even on the freeways. Everything ‘feels’ great and safe…, but I believe the weakest link is probably the tranny. Good thing I monitored the AT temp constantly. If there’s a steady incline for too long, temp would rise and unable to come down. So my solution is to pull over and let it cool down when it approaches 220 and never exceed 240.

I wish I could have a bigger better atf cooler but the shop said Sorento doesn’t have enough room for it…

anyway, here’s what my setup looks like:
View attachment 119871
I also weighed everything, including wife, kid, 3 cats and gears and 2/3 tank of water:
View attachment 119872
I believe I’m within all of my legal limits, but I probably should travel with less water for the sake of my tranny…
I eventually want to add a tranny cooler too. Like you, I would like to get the highest capacity that can fit. Would you please contact your tranny cooler installer for the brand and model number you had installed? Maybe it is on your work order receipt. Did you just ask them to install a transmission cooler, or did you specifically ask them to get and install the largest cooler that would fit?

As a DIY'er, there is to me: 1) what fits easily (w/o any modifications) and most shops would install and 2) whats a little bigger, but needs some modifications to install. If I could get 15%-20% more capacity by making some minor alterations, even if it added a few hours to the job, I would likely do that. Over engineering is a good (ok, OCD ;o) thing to do. LOL
 

·
Registered
2017 Kia Sorento SX V6 AWD, Tech Package
Joined
·
36 Posts
Newer Sorentos for sure can't tow 5000 lbs anymore because they don't have the V6 engines anymore.

I really don't understand how some of the older Sorentos with 5000lbs tow capacity can only have a tongue limit of 350. If you have less than 10% tongue weight, that will cause sway! Might as well just take out that 5000 capacity!

Anyway, again, considering today's car and RV market..., even if you do have the money, there's no guarantee that you'll be able to get what you want! Maybe when the market returns to normal, I'll find a better tow vehicle. For now, I'll just go slow and stop and rest and enjoy the view when tranny gets too hot! :p
So have you had the tranny temp go above your 220º caution level? What kinds of grades and how long, were those? How long on average would you wait to get tranny temp down. What temp do decide to proceed at after waiting to cool down. Thanks for the info. It helps us all. :eek:)
 

·
Registered
2019 Kia Sorento Ex 3.3L
Joined
·
8 Posts
Actually KIA Canada said, you can use WD hitch... If you read previous comments there is an email attached from KIA CA.
Thanks for sharing. I received the opposite from Kia. However, with a WD or not the tongue weight should not exceed 350 lbs which is almost impossible unless it is a very small trailer. Anyway, happy travels.
 

·
Registered
Sorento SX AWD 2015
Joined
·
1,033 Posts
I am sure its higher than that. I stood on mine and it didn't move much at all. LOL
New hitch on it and not towed yet. The hitch is quite well secured so I wouldn't worry about the tongue weight too much. These new Sorentos have a different transmission cooling system. No Hayden plate cooler, but are using so combo heater cooler of the engine and rad. ECanderson enlighted me but I don't see how its going to drop the transmission below a very hot rad fluid temp which is too high IMO>
 

·
Registered
2017 Sorento SX V6 AWD, 2014 Hyundai Santa Fe Sport Turbo, 2002 Honda S2000
Joined
·
43 Posts
So have you had the tranny temp go above your 220º caution level? What kinds of grades and how long, were those? How long on average would you wait to get tranny temp down. What temp do decide to proceed at after waiting to cool down. Thanks for the info. It helps us all. :eek:)
Sorry, I can’t seem to find my receipt for my atf cooler at the moment. What I have is just one of those most typical basic model I think. Originally we agreed to install one with a fan, but he said it wouldn’t fit later on… oh well.

without atf cooler, I think my Sorento atf temp would hover around 190~210 if I do hard accelerations. Average should only be around 200.
I’ve tried towing my TT without the cooler at 1st, but after 5~10 minutes around the block, temp would reach 220.
After the install, average temp without towing dropped down about 30 deg at around 170. I could tow around the block again and again without ever going over 210.
However looping around the block has 0 elevation changes. As I venture further away from home, I noticed gravity is not a friend. No matter how slight the elevation may be, if I go more than 10-15 miles, it’ll slowly creep up to 220 and won’t ever come down. I think freeways are better than local surface streets because you get more air cooling it and less shifts.

now if I just park with engine running, atf cooler could cool everything down pretty well in about 5 minutes.

I haven’t even been on a real incline yet. Most I’ve travel so far is 15 miles on the freeway… temp reaches 220, then I make a u turn home. On my way home, I guess there’s a slight drop in elevation. So temp was never a problem. Actually dropped back down to 210 and stayed there.

btw, I don’t go faster than 65mph. I mostly cruise at around 55~60 mph.

anyway, other than the temperature issue, the whole system felt very stable and safe! Plenty of big rigs passed me by and no sway!

it also doesn’t feel sluggish or unable to pull or anything… with brake controller, it also felt very safe under braking.
If you can find a way to cool the tranny better, please let us know!

other than this weakness, I’d say our Sorento is a pretty capable 1/4 ton truck! :D
 

·
Registered
2019 KIA Sorento LX V6 AWD
Joined
·
61 Posts
Thanks for sharing. I received the opposite from Kia. However, with a WD or not the tongue weight should not exceed 350 lbs which is almost impossible unless it is a very small trailer. Anyway, happy travels.
Interesting... Looks like KIA CA has no clue... which is sad actually...
I've used WD hitch on a few occasions and it did help a lot with sagging... with hitch weight around 330-350 the sagging was 2+ inches... with WD hitch no more than 1 inch.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Sorento SX FWD 2015
Joined
·
537 Posts
Although I have a 2015 SX I have been following this and was specifically interested in the transmission temperature discussion. Below is a picture of what Kia calls the 'Transmission Warmer' on my SX. I believe the newer models may be similar. The warmer/cooler is feed by coolant from the engine block so it will always be in the 190-210* F range after the engine is at operating temps. The only way to add a cooler to drop temps lower than the block temp would be to insert the cooler into the 'ATF Out' hose path (see pic). Basically insert longer hoses to and from the additional cooler. Problem is to find a good location for the new cooler, if not in front behind the grill then a fan assisted cooler in engine compartment ($$$).
My guess is the cooler installed by user BILLI's shop was a custom job, as I have been totally unable to find any aftermarket kits available. They may be concern in messing with the manufactures warming/cooling design. In old days the radiator, under normal conditions usually held coolant that was cooler than the block temperature, Kia's design uses block 210* water to cool the tranny. My assumption is the engineers know that, and figure it's OK To run hotter than the 170-180* F older days recommendations. I have always installed coolers on every vehicle I owned and they typically drop the fluid temp at least 20* F, the Sorento is my first exception. Also of concern is what this could do to the power-train transmission warranty when a tech sees extra hoses running out of the transmission. Specifically since Kia does not support a cooler option.

transmission cooler.JPG
 

·
Registered
2017 Sorento SX V6 AWD, 2014 Hyundai Santa Fe Sport Turbo, 2002 Honda S2000
Joined
·
43 Posts
Although I have a 2015 SX I have been following this and was specifically interested in the transmission temperature discussion. Below is a picture of what Kia calls the 'Transmission Warmer' on my SX. I believe the newer models may be similar. The warmer/cooler is feed by coolant from the engine block so it will always be in the 190-210* F range after the engine is at operating temps. The only way to add a cooler to drop temps lower than the block temp would be to insert the cooler into the 'ATF Out' hose path (see pic). Basically insert longer hoses to and from the additional cooler. Problem is to find a good location for the new cooler, if not in front behind the grill then a fan assisted cooler in engine compartment ($$$).
My guess is the cooler installed by user BILLI's shop was a custom job, as I have been totally unable to find any aftermarket kits available. They may be concern in messing with the manufactures warming/cooling design. In old days the radiator, under normal conditions usually held coolant that was cooler than the block temperature, Kia's design uses block 210* water to cool the tranny. My assumption is the engineers know that, and figure it's OK To run hotter than the 170-180* F older days recommendations. I have always installed coolers on every vehicle I owned and they typically drop the fluid temp at least 20* F, the Sorento is my first exception. Also of concern is what this could do to the power-train transmission warranty when a tech sees extra hoses running out of the transmission. Specifically since Kia does not support a cooler option.

View attachment 119894
Yes, my cooler attaches forward of the radiator, there's plenty of room for that. Just not enough room to put a fan on it.

I found my receipt this morning, but I saw no model or kit number info on it... It costs $222 for labor, ATF cooler itself is only $98.31 and new fluids $24.10. It's actually pretty cheap! So I don't think it's too custom of a job? Other than adding the hoses and added a bit more fluids?

I searched online a bit, my looks like this one: Mishimoto Ranger Automatic Transmission Oil Cooler Assembly; Universal Transmission Fluid Cooler; 20 Inch x 7.5 Inch x 0.75 Inch MMTC-TF-2075 (Universal Fitment)

However, I cannot be sure.

Anyway, I think Kia engineers used the hot radiator water to warm up the tranny oil to get it up to operating temperature faster. However, as transmission got hot, my atf cooler is good enough to dump the extra heat. Like I said, operating temp without towing got reduced by about 30F, from 200 down to 170.

I wonder if perhaps we could add a switch to at least stop coolant from warming up the ATF while towing? ;)

However, as tranny got hotter than coolant, I suppose the radiator in the end is actually helping cooling the ATF?

Other possible methods of cooling is perhaps just cut some more 'vent holes' on the hood? I noticed my intake air temperature going sky high too! up to 160~170... probably due to all the heat dumped by my AC, Radiator and ATF cooler when the car isn't moving much... some sort of vent to allow all the hot air to escape the engine compartment might help?

Also, perhaps we can spray some mist onto the radiator & atf cooler to help the condensors cool down? ;)
 

·
Registered
2016 Sorento SXL
Joined
·
1,886 Posts
Also, perhaps we can spray some mist onto the radiator & atf cooler to help the condensors cool down? ;)
Yeah, like that. Or if you could just figure out how to get one of these bolted to the front end somehow where it wouldn't obstruct the view, you could cool the air before it even gets to radiator, assuring that the thermostat would never have to open! Now, where to connect the garden hose???

119911
 

·
Registered
Sorento SX AWD 2015
Joined
·
1,033 Posts
I'd hope they'd be using a full Synthetic fluid now in the 8 speed with that setup. I know the 6 is not. There is no Tow Mode transmission selection and I didn't notice a mention of which should be used when towing, at this time anyway. A revisit to the manual But I doubt I overlooked it.
 

·
Registered
Sorento SX FWD 2015
Joined
·
537 Posts
I found my receipt this morning, but I saw no model or kit number info on it.
That's very typical, except for specific off road vehicles and sports cars requiring customized mounting almost all coolers are just ordering a heat exchanger and hoses and finding somewhere to mount them.

You mentioned your intake air temp. When I mounted the cooler on my GMC Envoy the 'External Air Temperature' (different than IAT) started reading high. I had to relocate that sensor to a different position away from the cooler fins after the install. By any chance is your cooler near or directly under the engine air intake plenum feeding the intake. On Camaro I have a real CAI (cold air injection) it has the air filter and intake relocated to the front left wheel-well outside the engine radiator compartment. IAT is no more than 20*F above ambient. I Just can't drive into any puddles... Going to verify the Sorento when I get a chance.
 
101 - 120 of 174 Posts
Top