2011 Kia Optima Kia Optima 2011

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2011 Kia Optima repairs by problem area

Engine (19%)

Transmission and Drivetrain (3%)

Brakes and Traction Control (3%)

Suspension and Steering (18%)

Electrical and Air Conditioning (48%)

Paint, Rust, Leaks, Rattles, and Trim (7%)

Other (2%)

Chart based on 91 repairs.
See TSBs and recalls for the 2011 Kia Optima.

2011 Kia Optima repair cost distribution

$2500+ (2%)

$1000 - $2499 (2%)

$500 - $999 (5%)

$100 - $499 (17%)

< $100 (75%)

Worried about potential repair costs? An extended warranty can provide peace of mind.

Chart based on 64 repair trips. The repair cost chart excludes repairs made under warranty, do-it-yourself repairs, and repair trips that include maintenance.

2011 Kia Optima

Engine not specified

Kia Optima in Michigan, United States
Jun 2015 - Jun 2016
Jan 2016

US $3600
Huge knocking from engine. Allegedly oil pump failed. Engine destroyed. Dealer paid 50% of cost (total was $7200) 

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2011 Kia Optima 4dr Sedan

turbocharged 274hp 2.0L I4 6-speed shiftable automatic FWD

Kia Optima in Utah, United States
Sep 2014 - Jun 2018
Dec 2014

38000 mi
Fuel leak from high pressure fuel pump 
Aug 2015

49000 mi
Roof console fell apart. 
Nov 2015

51000 mi
Engine lost power. Turbo wastegate was adjusted under warranty. 
Jun 2018

79000 mi

US $570
Return line leaking. Replaced. 
Kia Optima in California, United States
Jul 2011 - Aug 2013
Nov 2011

5000 mi
replaced Nav screen 
Apr 2013

29200 mi
Voltage adjustment 
Kia Optima in Connecticut, United States
Jun 2011 - Sep 2012
Sep 2012

25000 mi
oil leaking - bad oil pan seal 
Kia Optima in California, United States
Jun 2011 - Jun 2018
Feb 2014

31000 mi
Transmission would slam into gear, and shift roughly when cold. Dealer replaced transmission oil temp sensor. Also updated computer ECU and changed brake switch which was a recall. 
Dec 2016

65000 mi

US $180
Rubber coupler is steering worn out causing vehicle to have slack in steering wheel. Replace coupler under warranty, A/C not cooling when interior temp is above 105 degrees. Compressor does not engage for at least 5 minutes or until interior temperature drops below 100. Dealer attempted to reprogram A/C as system cools well under other conditions or once. 
Feb 2017

69000 mi
Replaced worn out steering coupler bushing that caused clunk noise in steering wheel 
Kia Optima in Georgia, United States
May 2011 - Nov 2017
Apr 2015

34200 mi
Had to replace battery 
Jan 2016

41000 mi

US $100
Replaced Battery 
Dec 2016

47000 mi
Reflash computer 
Jun 2017

59000 mi

US $38
A/C not cooling all of the time. Not draining properly. Used A/C evaporator cleaner P/N UM090 
Nov 2017

64000 mi

US $1165
turbo controller failed 
Kia Optima in Indiana, United States
Jun 2013 - Dec 2016
Aug 2013

20900 mi
Intermitent issues with the car not starting,, a switch under the brake pedal was a recall and fixed the problem once replaced 
Kia Optima in New York, United States
Dec 2011 - Sep 2014
May 2013

9500 mi
blown engine due to cracked spark plugs. porcelain insulation from spark plugs in bank 2 and 3 fell into engine 
Kia Optima in Washington, United States
May 2011 - Mar 2015
Oct 2012

18000 mi
Sun glass holder seems to have misshapen due to excessive roof heat during Summer. Compartment was on floor when I entered vehicle after work one day. No broken parts, but kept falling back out after several attempts to reinstall it. 
Kia Optima in New York, United States
Apr 2011 - Jun 2018
Sep 2011

6000 mi
Sunroof button only partly functional; requires holding it in instead of a quick push. No big deal. 
Sep 2012

17000 mi
Sudden lack of power, no turbo boost at all. It "threw a code" and the car dealer's svce dpt knew what to do. Under warranty, so they provided a free rental car. I have no complaint. 
Nov 2012

19700 mi
Warning light came on for brakes. Haven't taken it in yet. 
Apr 2013

25000 mi
Slight oil leak at crankcase/oilpan junction; was fixed quickly under warranty. 
Nov 2013

31700 mi
Brake fluid warning light continues to come on erratically. So does another warning light that refers to an instrument problem. This problem has shown itself periodically since the first 10 months but is only mildly annoying. 
Mar 2014

36000 mi
Old issue: a warning light on dash which turned out to be a faulty fluid level sensor. The car's brakes always seemed fine, but my (good) dealer replaced the sensor AND the master cylinder, vac booster & pump, and gave me a loaner car. 
Oct 2014

40000 mi
Paddle shifter on steering wheel: ceased functioning. Will shortly be repaired on warranty. 
May 2015

48000 mi
Backup camera was slow to run; showed lines but no picture for up to 30 sec 
Feb 2016

54000 mi
Left front wheel bearing getting noisy. Confirmed by mechanic to be such, but no time avail yet to do a repair, and the $345 estimate ($128 bearing; $194 labor) will induce me to shop around. 
Mar 2016

56000 mi
Left frt wheel bearing was getting noisy over a period of weeks. Was replaced under warranty. 
Feb 2017

64000 mi

US $140
Turbo waste gate went out of spec resulting in big loss of power; much less than a non-turbo motor. Top speed about 60mph. A known issue with a couple of TSBs, but not covered by warranty. Given that problem arose at 61k, I felt cheated. 
Jun 2018

78000 mi
Right front wheel bearing was getting very noisy. Covered under warranty 
Kia Optima in Pennsylvania, United States
Mar 2011 - Sep 2012
Jan 2012

7000 mi
Performed TSB on key fobs 
Kia Optima in Ontario, Canada
May 2013 - Jun 2017
Jun 2013

15500 mi
Nav locked up, replaced nav system. New nav worked until car was sold but dash rattled and could never be repaired. Fuel level sender failed replaced 
Kia Optima in Georgia, United States
Apr 2011 - Jul 2018
Aug 2013

46300 mi
The turbo gate was replaced 
Jan 2017

48200 mi
The steering coupler had worn out and caused the wheel to shake. The coupler was replaced. 
Kia Optima in Texas, United States
Feb 2011 - Mar 2014
Jun 2012

24000 mi
Electric heated seat switch was bad. Rear passenger, driver side. Replaced under warranty. 
Sep 2012

29000 mi
Dome light flicks on when turning a corner. Flicks on momentarily when just pushing on the drivers door. Please note this problem is caused by closing the door on the seatbelt buckle which just lines up with the door switch smashing it in. 
Feb 2014

51100 mi
Sticky wastegate was causing the turbo to choke and the vehicle to lose power resulting in a sluggish speed that will not exceed 70mph. Let alone taking a long time to go from 0-60 mph. Engine light came on the next day. 

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2011 Kia Optima 4dr Sedan

200-horsepower 2.4L I4 6-speed shiftable automatic FWD

Kia Optima in Alberta, Canada
Sep 2013 - Jan 2018
Jan 2018

62000 mi

C $300
Coil spring on front driver side snapped, required replacement. Could not find parts from any 3rd party source (this is in Canada), was forced to get replacement spring from dealership. 
Kia Optima in Wisconsin, United States
Jul 2012 - Oct 2014
Aug 2012

30500 mi
Brake switch replaced because it was affecting starting the vehicle keyless ignition. 
Kia Optima in California, United States
Jan 2017 - Jan 2018
Sep 2017

50000 mi
Oil leak from pan. 
Kia Optima in Ontario, Canada
Sep 2013 - Sep 2017
Feb 2015

39060 mi

C $400
Brake service and transmission always fishing for gears 
Kia Optima in Ohio, United States
May 2014 - Jun 2014
May 2014

35000 mi
Dead battery because headlights would not automatically turn off after parking in garage. WHY..I got seat belt stuck in door after closing door the car body was bent misaligning the door button that turns off lights when door is shut. Repaired by KIA Dealership...HOW..placed metal washer (as spacer) to behind door button to re-align. Thus when door is closed the headlights now turn off and the battery does not get drained. 
Kia Optima in New Jersey, United States
Dec 2012 - May 2017
Oct 2014

51700 mi
Left front wheel bearing noisy 
Aug 2016

88600 mi

US $150
Right front Hub Bearing Noisy 
Kia Optima in Florida, United States
Aug 2015 - Sep 2015
Sep 2015

25000 mi
Hose on a/c unit was leaking Freon. Had to replace and charge system. 
Kia Optima in Alabama, United States
Oct 2016 - Jun 2017
Jun 2017

59317 mi

US $76
A left rear bulb marker and a new cabin air filter were replaced VERY SHORTLY, I'll bring back my KIA Optima LX for new rear brake pads and rotors 
Kia Optima in New Hampshire, United States
Jun 2015 - Jun 2018
Jun 2016

65000 mi

US $125
Battery tested low--replaced with OEM battery 
Aug 2016

72000 mi

US $105
Tie rod caused a failed yearly inspection--became loose at the knuckle due to an impact to road debris 
Nov 2016

79200 mi
Driver power seat will not incline the seatback. Incline motor failure. 
Dec 2016

80000 mi

US $550
Drivers Seatback would not incline. Incline motor failure. 
Jan 2017

80800 mi
Driver power seat will not incline the seatback. The power module for the incline motor failed. 
Apr 2017

85000 mi
Replaced Driver's side headlight with LED bulb 
Jun 2017

92000 mi

US $450
Clockspring failed, resulting in loss of use of horn, cruise control, trip/reset button. Replaced by OEM clockspring 
Dec 2017

99000 mi
Bluetooth System does not initiate; Voice recognition does not initiate Headlight diode had come off 
Apr 2018

103800 mi

US $400
Engine seized due to known manufacturing defect; replaced under warranty Starter replaced due to engine failure 
May 2018

105000 mi

US $400
Replaced all pads; Replaced rear rotors, Replaced Left Rear caliper 
Kia Optima in Wisconsin, United States
Jan 2014 - Mar 2016
Aug 2014

30900 mi
Check engine light came on, without loss of drivability. 
Kia Optima in Pennsylvania, United States
May 2011 - Mar 2015
Sep 2011

1000 mi
Faulty air bag sensor in passenger seat cushion. 
Kia Optima in Oregon, United States
Mar 2011 - Nov 2017
Nov 2012

10300 mi
Dealer replaced under warranty a switch attached to brake pedal that prevented car from starting if brake pedal was depressed. Could still start car by holding down button for 20 sec. Dealer states it is a common problem. 
Jan 2014

12700 mi
Check engine light was on, dealer replaced faulty exhaust valve control solenoid. 
Kia Optima in North Carolina, United States
Apr 2011 - Sep 2013
May 2012

12400 mi
loose fuse caused ac and tail lights to go out. 
Kia Optima in Colorado, United States
Feb 2011 - Jul 2012
Dec 2011

16000 mi
Right rear rattle. Not suspension related but the dealership thought it was a shock part. They replaced it but failed to fix the rattle. I have yet to go back. 
Feb 2012

20000 mi
Factory wheel (rim), clear coat started peeling. Wheel replaced under warranty. 
Kia Optima in Colorado, United States
Mar 2011 - May 2014
Sep 2012

17000 mi
Switch in brake to start engine failed. Replaced under warranty. Dealer told me how to get it started and drove to dealer for replacement. Great service. 
Kia Optima in North Carolina, United States
Feb 2011 - Nov 2013
Jul 2011

11700 mi
Bluetooth not functioning, head unit for sound; bluetooth, replaced 
Jun 2013

46000 mi
Computer failed, was replaced 
Kia Optima in Minnesota, United States
Feb 2011 - Apr 2013
May 2011

3000 mi
Steering will intermittently pull to the left. Appears to be electric power steering related. Chassis alignment and reset of "chip" in power steering did not fix problem.....still exists. new attempt to fix original problem was not successful. update: at time car sold considered this fix satisfactory. 
Kia Optima in Pennsylvania, United States
Jun 2012 - Sep 2013
Sep 2012

23000 mi
Traction control light stayed on all the time, had to replace sensor 
Kia Optima in New York, United States
Aug 2011 - Sep 2018
Sep 2011

3000 mi
Heated/Cooled driver seat had stopped working previously. A switch and a module were replaced and BCM flash done during previous attempts. Since it's now intermittent (it's stopped working again at times), they say they cannot work on it. UPDATE: around 3,500 miles so far. Heated/Cooled driver seat worked (once), mostly not working. Dealer & KIA corporate have said they won't fix it if it isn't completely dead. So I wait until it dies permanently. Might never get fixed! 
Mar 2012

5000 mi
I've had ongoing issue with the heated/cooled seat. They replaced the switch a second time. Now they are ordered a new "wiring harness". Still awaiting that to come in for them to install. 
Apr 2012

5300 mi
They installed the wiring harness. The system works (it was working prior to installing the harness after they cleaned the contacts), so we'll keep an eye on it if it's finally a permanent solution. 
Kia Optima in Texas, United States
Mar 2012 - Apr 2012
Apr 2012

17000 mi
Light sensor went out for auto-on headlight Radio display flicker brightly when accelerating at night with headlights on. Heated steering wheel top half stopped working 
Kia Optima in Virginia, United States
Sep 2011 - May 2016
Feb 2013

27200 mi
Rear shock rattle 
Kia Optima in New Jersey, United States
Aug 2011 - Jul 2018
Apr 2013

33800 mi
Parking sensor for Push Button Ignition replaced. 
Nov 2013

42300 mi
Driver side floor mat hook became disloged from the floor. 
Kia Optima in Colorado, United States
Feb 2011 - Dec 2015
Mar 2015

34000 mi

US $30
Key fob lost its code. 

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2011 Kia Optima 4dr Sedan

200-horsepower 2.4L I4 6-speed manual FWD

Kia Optima in California, United States
Nov 2011 - Sep 2015

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2011 Kia Optima 4dr Sedan

166-horsepower 2.4L I4 Hybrid 6-speed shiftable automatic FWD

Kia Optima in Ontario, Canada
Jul 2013 - Sep 2014
Mar 2014

81840 mi
Rear stabilizers .. KIA dealer found it was a covered repair. 
Jul 2014

90360 mi

C $520
Front control arms require replacement ... Had been in the shop before for the report of this clunk/noise but dealer could not duplicate. Took mechanic out and noise heard .. requires replacement but still dealing with the dealer over repair 
Kia Optima in Arizona, United States
Aug 2017 - Sep 2017
Sep 2017

105961 mi

US $43
Had an extended unlimited mileage warranty put out by Kia for the steering wheel coupler needing replacement. Noticed that my car was making a clunking noise inside the steering column every time I drove on a rough road. The dealership replaced the coupler and the clunking completely disappeared. The service manager said that my coupler was slightly worn and that the new coupler is made of a better material that lasts longer. The 12v battery kept intermittently dying and had to be jumped frequently. The dealership told me that they tested my alternator and it checked fine but, my battery failed when tested. During the time frame that the 12v battery was dying and even after replacement, the car started having rough idling (almost sounded like it was going to stall) when ever I would stop, start off in reverse or in drive. The car would lose power going up small hills and would sound as if it was starving from air/fuel. I received a CEL for PO106 MAP Sensor code. I removed the map sensor and cleaned it good with a cloth that was sprayed with contact cleaner. There was minimal residue left on the rag from the sensor. After resetting the CEL and test driving the car, the rough idling/attempting to stall continued as described above. After further investigation, I noticed that the air intake hose prior to the MAP sensor/engine was slightly offset to the point that there was a gap on one portion of the intake hose. After loosening the clamp all the way and loosening the intake filter cover, I was able to re-align the intake hose and tighten everything down. I then reset my car and test drove it around my subdivision. The rough idle initially was there but, once my actual engine kicked on and a vacuum was established it seemed to return back to its normal self. I test drove it for a few miles and there was no rough idle at stops or the sound of wanting to stall. We did order a new Map Absolute Pressure Sensor overnight so if the problem comes back I will swap that piece out if needed. Will drive car tomorrow to see if the problem returns. 

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2011 Kia Optima Repair Histories

See our lemon odds and nada odds page to see vehicles with no repairs or vehicles with more than three repairs. To see how frequently 2011 Kia Optima problems occur, check out our car reliability stats.

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