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Kia Optima Problems and Repair Histories

415 TrueDelta members own a 2000 or newer Kia Optima. 123 of these members (29.6%) have reported repairs for their car. A total of 215 repairs to Kia Optimas--an average of 0.5 per vehicle--have been reported.

See our lemon odds and nada odds page for more details. To see how frequently Kia Optima problems occur, check out our car reliability stats.

Want to read about specific problems behind these stats? Jump to the Kia Optima problem descriptions below.

Don't infer Kia Optima problem frequency from what you see on this page. Many lucky owners have had no repairs, and their cars are not shown.

Percentage of Kia Optima repairs by problem area

22% of the Kia Optima repairs were to the engine, 7% to the transmission, 7% to the brakes, 9% to the suspension, 35% to the electrical or air-conditioning systems, 13% to the body and trim, and 7% to other areas of the vehicle.

Chart based on 215 repairs.

Kia Optima repair cost distribution

Of the Kia Optima repairs that were not covered by warranty and were not do-it-yourself repairs, 16% cost less than $100, 48% between $100 and $499, 23% between $500 and $999, 6% between $1000 and $2499, and 6% more than $2500.

Chart based on 31 repair trips. The repair cost chart excludes repairs made under warranty, do-it-yourself repairs, and repair trips that include maintenance.
Non-members can see only ten Kia Optima problems and repair histories. Log in or join us to see them all.
Repair costs are in local units.

2007 Kia Optima 4dr Sedan

161-horsepower 2.4L I4 5-speed shiftable automatic FWD

Kia Optima in Michigan, United States
Date Odometer
(in miles)
Cost Problem/Repair Description
Sep 2008 13000    
17000 0 Key would not turn in ignition. Called Kia roadside. They towed the vehicle to the dealership for no cost. The mechanic put some antifreeze in the ignition, and the problem has not recurred. I didn't pay any part of it, and it was fixed quick. Very happy! 
66000 0 Transmission was shifting strange. Dealer drove it, confirmed problem - reprogrammed shifting software. Noted that axleshaft was seized in hub, causing intermittent rubbing sound. Replaced axleshaft and hub. All work covered under warranty. 
93700 150 Replaced front struts, ball joints and sway bar links 
94000  
Kia Optima in Pennsylvania, United States
Date Odometer
(in miles)
Cost Problem/Repair Description
May 2007 1000    
1500 16550 ( No Horns ) I never tried the horns when I bought the Optoma, but didn't work after trying at a later date. Horns were shorted out & ordered.Replaced with no problem. 
2500 0 Well it happened again (No Horns) Took the car back to the dealer to find they could not find the problem after 2 1/2 hrs of waiting. Got a loaner and left the car there. The next day they called to tell me they found the trouble. Will it pick up tomorrow 
3700 0 tire pressure dash light came on. Checked tire pressure ok. Called kia & they told me to add 2# pressure to tires from 30# to 32#. That did the trick The light went off. 
 

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2006.5 Kia Optima 4dr Sedan

161-horsepower 2.4L I4 5-speed shiftable automatic FWD

Kia Optima in Pennsylvania, United States
Date Odometer
(in miles)
Cost Problem/Repair Description
Dec 2006 3000    
4000 0 Passenger seat bottom sensor defective causing passenger air bag light to come on when a passenger sat in seat and for the airbag system to be inoperative. Repairs took over 30 days due to parts availability. 
6000 0 Passenger air bag indicator repeated an intermittent off signal when passenger was in seat. Kia rep was called in to update software. 
10000 0 Passenger airbag system again malfunctioning, intermittently, with a passenger under 140#s. Dealer still can't find problem. 
20000 0 Reflash for proper emission testing. 
 
Kia Optima in New Hampshire, United States
Date Odometer
(in miles)
Cost Problem/Repair Description
Dec 2006 2000    
15000 0 air conditioner compressor caused whining noise at idle and at acceleration. 
19000 0 audible noise from engine compartment in the nature of a whining noise. air conditoner compressor source of problem; fixed and no futher noise. 
 
Kia Optima in Pennsylvania, United States
Date Odometer
(in miles)
Cost Problem/Repair Description
Dec 2006 0    
3000 0 Replacement of malformed (warped) plastic instrument panel gauge trim cover. Purely cosmetic. Replacement part has been received at dealership, will be installed on 7/6. 
4700 0 Replacement of dashboard gauge cover (cosmetic flaw) 
6300 0 Replacement of cruise control switch module (cosmetic flaw) 
 
Kia Optima in Illinois, United States
Date Odometer
(in miles)
Cost Problem/Repair Description
Dec 2006 2000    
2700 0 They cant seem to figure out why the passenger side air bag periodically fails.Also the headlights have a weird pattern. 4 visits to date. 
3300 0 On Feb 12th,the area tech reflashed the seat sensors and that seemed to fix it.Unfortunately after they fixed the low air in the tires indicator,that is failing again.Shows a false low air signal. 
56000  

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2006.5 Kia Optima 4-door

6-cylinder automatic 2WD

Kia in Tennessee, United States
Date Odometer
(in miles)
Cost Problem/Repair Description
Mar 2007 1000    
1000 0 Tire pressure sensor was defective. Replaced defective tire pressure sensor. 
 

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2004 Kia Optima 4dr Sedan

138-horsepower 2.4L I4 5-speed manual FWD

Kia Optima in California, United States
Date Odometer
(in miles)
Cost Problem/Repair Description
Jun 2009 82000    
83700 800 Clutch pressure plate! I drive 95% freeway miles - hardly any shifting. 
106000 200 Leaking high pressure AC hose. Replaced hose, recharged system. 
128000 60 Crankshaft position sensor failed. Apparently a common occurance with this model. It's behind the timing belt cover which is behind the power steering/AC belt and alternator/water pump belt. Difficult repair, but I did it myself. 
166000 60 Leaking valve cover gasket. 
169000  

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