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Kia Sedona, Van
#4016 of 4592 Do not buy a Sedona it is a death trap!!!!
Sep 13, 2004 (12:07 pm)
My wife and I bought a 2003 Kia Sedona brand new from a local dealer ( Nisan/Kia of Middletown, N.Y.). We loved the car and aside from some minor problems ( passenger side power seat not working, excessive wear to tires at only 20K miles, hot spots on the brake rotors), we must say that it was an excellent vehicle. Two weeks ago I dropped my daughters off at school which is five minutes from our home. When I returned, I noticed smoke coming out of the vent on the drivers side. I could not believe it the car was serviced properly, and still had nine years and 80,000 miles left on the warranty... how was this happening??? I went in the house to tell my wife we had a serious problem with the van and then returned outside to check on the situation with the smoke. At that point the car ( with no keys in the ignition) started all by itself, and the windshield wipers switched on. Not knowing what to do, I called Kia roadside assistance to see if they could tell me what I should do. While I was on the phone my wife went outside to see what was going on, and when she did the car had filled with smoke. She then opened the door, to let the smoke out of the car and the panic alarm sounded, and then she screamed the car was on fire. I grabbed a small fire extinguisher from our kitchen, but as soon as I saw the flames, I discarded it, ran upstairs and grabbed my seven year old son out of bed and evacuated the house, and called 911. If not for the quickness of the fire department arriving our home would have been destroyed. It is a miracle it was not damaged other than our driveway ( which was paved a year ago) having the surface of it melted, soot stains all over our carpet from the firemen checking the house for any fire, and a bad smokey smell.
If I had been in the car when the fire started ( or my daughters which were only out of the car 10 minutes before the blaze started we surely would have been burned or killed. The fire chief stated it was an eletrical problem with the car that started the fire, and another two or three minutes and it would have exploded.
Now for the best part. Kia refuses to talk to us about this problem. We called them an hour after it happened, ,and we have e-mailed them pictures, and the police report. We are still waiting for the official report from the fire chief. We have contacted our dealer, and Kia directly and the case has been turned over to someone , but the operaters at the Kia customer service hotline will not give me a name. or a contact number. This is madness. What good is their warranty, if they will not back it up.
Anyway for those of you that have a Sedona already, I pray that you will not have to go through the agony that my family is experiencing. If you are thinking of buying one I would not suggest it, these cars are a death trap waiting to happen.
Also just a note the car was totally stock. there was no after market equipment ever installed in the vehicle. Oh, and yes we have alredy contacted a lawyer!!!
Sep 13, 2004 (12:47 pm)
If Kia knows you have a lawyer, they probably won't talk to you anymore. That's fine - that's what the lawyer is there for. Good luck!
#4018 of 4592 Re: Do not buy a Sedona it is a death trap!!!! [theundying]
Sep 13, 2004 (3:14 pm)
I am dissapointed you had such a traumatic experience. If that event happened to me I suppose I'd use similar if not stronger language in opposition to Kia's Sedona.
I imagine you are a one in a million case otherwise NHTSA would be all over the Sedona. I've seen all kinds of cars on the side of the road over the years that flamed to nothing. I wouldn't call the Sedona a death trap anymore than I'd call the Toyota Camry I saw once burned up once either. Sometimes good products malfunction.
We owned an '02 Sedona for a while then traded for an '04 and have had some nuisance problems(mostly with the crappy dealer) but we still enjoy the Sedona. I just hope if it ever does take a dump on us it wont be as dramatic as yours.
'04 Sedona EX
#4019 of 4592 take que from Honda
Sep 14, 2004 (12:20 am)
Kia should just play dumb like Honda and blame it on poor techs and jiffy lubes.
#4020 of 4592 Re: take que from Honda [norne]
Sep 14, 2004 (3:47 pm)
Sounds like an interesting story you have to tell. Do tell
#4021 of 4592 Lawyers always help-right?
Sep 16, 2004 (4:08 am)
OK, let me see if I have this right...a car with an obvious electrical problem is smoking in your garage, and the phone is going to resolve the problem? There appears to have been plenty of warning to move the vehicle out of your garage and away from the house including when you first noticed smoke coming out of the vents. How was this part Kia's fault?
I'm sure the emotions and adrenalin are still running high, but death trap? Madness? Although your wife's reaction to open the door was very typical, the fire folks tell you not to open doors to your house that have smoke/heat because the increased oxygen/fresh air can cause the flames to break out.
If your description was correct, and your children had been in the car, would you really have continued driving when smoke came out the vents, or would you have pulled over and unloaded everyone from the vehicle?
I'm sorry you feel like a victim but this is exactly why Americans have become a litigous society and the lawyers run roughshod over everything. You carry car insurance, let them and "their" lawyers work it out with Kia. Meanwhile drive on with your life.
BTW, I fought a car fire at my father's service station many years ago, and again roadside with a trucker not so many years ago. Once they start to burn, you won't put one out with typical home extinguishers, no matter what size/class...just too much to burn.
I had a brand new aircraft with 60 flight hours on it blow up on me in the air and dump me out into the slipstream at 500mph...I flew 10 days later, as soon as I got my arm out of the sling and didn't call Grumman products death traps and warn other aviators to stay away...sometimes good products just have hidden defects and malfunction.
I am not trying to start a free fire zone here, but this isn't a Pinto/exploding gas tank situation here, and unless yours happens to be the tip of a "Kia hidden defect" iceburg, I think you are overreacting a bit.
#4022 of 4592 Re: Lawyers always help-right? [navyair]
Sep 16, 2004 (9:16 am)
First of all read what I wrote!!!! What a typical know it alll response.
1)I never stated that the car was in the garage. the car, it was in fact in the driveway.
2) The car did not start smoking until I pulled into my driveway. I had just dropped my kids off at school. If the car had started smoking while they were in the car, or while I was driving on the street, I would have shut it off, and pulled over and evaxcuated the car.
3) There was no warning of an eletrical problem, until the car started smoking.
4) How is this Kia's problem... hmmmmm.... let's see the car only had 9 years and 80k miles left on the warranty. No, you are right I should just go on with my life and let my insurance company cut me a check that will not payoff my loan, replace the same car ( KIa's reasale value is terrible in comparison to other similar vehicles), or fix the driveway I just had repaved for $1000.00.
5) The car door was opened to let the smoke out of the car. We did not know the fire had started or that there was even a potential fire until the door was open and this happened after the panic had sounded
6) I also found two other people who have had their Sedona's catch fire as well. Hidden defect....???
7) Since Kia will not tell me what they intend on doing ( I finally spoke to someone who promised to call me back with a decision yesterday, as they are aware this is their responsibility, and they never bothered), yes I think a lawyer is necessary.
8) "There appears to have been plenty of warning to move the vehicle out of your garage and away from the house including when you first noticed smoke coming out of the vents. How was this part Kia's fault?"
This is the dumbest statement I have ever heard. The car is one year old. It certainly is not my fault, and as far as getting in the car and moving it, it took less than five minutes for the whole event to take place.
Every message board has at least one person who knows everything and posts messages without even reading and acknowledging the full content of the post. You have no idea what we have been through and if you had any clue, you would've thought twice about the comments you made.
Sep 16, 2004 (12:00 pm)
I can see that you are a person on an even keel especially after those two posts of yours, so if the group feels I'm out of line, I will apologize.
You will note that I refrain from personal attacks in my posts, and suggest you do the same in the future.
BTW, if you haven't looked into it, your homeowners insurance probably will cover your driveway damage, minus the deductible.
This post probably belongs on the Kia Problems board, so apologize to the group/host in advance.
#4024 of 4592 Re: Lawyers always help-right? [theundying]
Sep 16, 2004 (1:10 pm)
Hey, relax. I am very sorry to hear about the problem with your Sedona. It must have been fairly traumatic. I hope this is a fluke occurrence and is not a design defect that may be likely to occur on other Sedonas. Still, there is no reason to come on this board and say 'Kia Sedona is a death trap.' That is a silly thing to say. These sorts of things happen to vehicles of all makes and models. It is simply the rate of occurrence, which a single owner cannot determine based solely on his/her own experience, that determines the quality of the vehicle.
navyair is a frequent contributor to the Sedona forums. He/she is not a know-it-all and is quite a helpful and even-keeled poster. His/her response to your post was a little strong, but I felt it was mostly on target, save for the part where he thought your car was in the garage when this happened.
I do agree with you that a lawyer is probably needed in this situation. I also agree with navyair that our society has become overly litigious.
#4025 of 4592 Re: Lawyers always help-right? [bluedevils]
Sep 16, 2004 (3:56 pm)
I too thought Navyair might have been a little strong in the reply but I will admit I also was a little irritated by the comment accusing the Kia Sedona of being a "Deathtrap".
I have no more fear of my Sedona catching fire in my garage than I would if I had a Chrysler or GM in there.
As I mentioned in a previous post, Had that happened to me I'd expect Kia to step up and do the right thing and not only replace my vehicle, but repair my driveway IN ADDITION to compensating me for "Loss of use".
The only way I could imagine Kia not willingly do this is if there were modifications done that caused the failure.
'04 Sedona EX