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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Year: 2011
Make: Hyundai
Model: Santa Fe
Engine: 2.4L
Transmission: Automatic
Mileage: 135k

About a month ago, my wife's 2011 Santa Fe had intermittent issues starting. When this happened, I would give it a jump and then it would go. I assumed it was a weak battery.

Last week, the car would not start at all. So I removed the battery, cleaned it up, and tested it with my multimeter. 12.8v...which surprised me. Next, I put the battery back in, and the car started...(no idea how). A day later, the car wouldn't start. I decided to check all that I could think of. Once again, I jumped the car and it worked. When running, there was 14+v on the battery (indicating the alternator was functioning). I then check the alternator and it was good as well.

Shut the car off, and it wouldn't start! I poked around some forums and discovered that some people found issues with the ground connections, specifically that the paint was too thick on the chassis. So i sanded the paint down to the metal, applied dialectic grease on every connection I could find, and then the car started...

The next day, car wouldn't start. At this point, I'm losing my mind because there is no rhyme or reason to it. Then, I replaced the starter with a brand new one. I assumed that it was the starter or starter solenoid that was causing the intermittent issue. Turned the key...no start. As a last ditch effort, I removed and tested the Neutral Safety Switch (under the battery tray) to see if the car thought it was in a drive gear. Switch tested out perfect, no issues.

For good measure, I rechecked the battery and it was still fully charged. I removed the connectors and replaced the bolts to ensure they were tightening down all the way. Still no start.

What is crazy though is, if I connect jumpers to the battery cable connectors...the car will start. I am confounded at this point. Hoping someone else has experienced this issue.

FYI - I also checked that the car was getting fuel, the fuel pump is pressurizing, etc. I strongly feel it is an electrical issue.
 

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good for doing ground connection fix first. Very important. You may consider running a brand new ground wire to a new spot just to eliminate the existing wires (internal corrosion) as an issue. It happens. I have very similar issues - and though I am still working on a fix - i've noticed a "spark" and "ticking noise" every 5-10 seconds coming from the crankshaft pulley while it's running. This will cause all the no start / electrical issues as well. See if yours has this problem. The spark is very visible and audible in the shade at idle. If you have this, replace the crank position sensor and while you're under there, look for stripped / chewed / frayed / damaged wires and wrap them with heat shrink or tape. Also check to see if you negative battery cable terminal clamp is getting hot - mine was which is why I did the ground cleaning first thing. That seems to be fixed now, but I still have battery light and brake light on dash... no check engine light though. And the seat belt chime dings and flashes intermittently while driving. Someone just gave this car to me TODAY so that's all I have / know at the moment. If you DO see the spark, I read elsewhere that greasing / oiling lightly the belt top and sides helped eliminate the spark / short (though it's a temporary fix). I also noticed that the crank pulley was wobbling which is likely contributing to the CPS sensor issue, if that is indeed part of the problem.
 
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