Tapping or Creaking Noise when coasting at low speed

Discussion in 'Kia Niro' started by wizziwig, Jun 8, 2019.

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Do you hear the same noise?

  1. Yes, I hear the same noise

    44 vote(s)
  2. No, I don't hear the noise

    24 vote(s)
  1. This week I was wondering if a tooth is shearing off the reduction gear, maybe due to poor installation of. the motor sometimes? I am over 1100 miles now. So far, so good...
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  3. daveinca

    daveinca New Member

    Wow, not sure how I missed this either. Just bought the car today and took it on a mid-range trip. As soon as I let the car coast under about 20mph with the radio off I heard the tapping noise. It’s pretty bad. I’m going back to the dealer to formally complain and will see what happens.
    Andrew Le and electriceddy like this.
  4. niro525

    niro525 Member


    Good luck talking with the dealer!
  5. Ugh. New car too . How frustrating! Show them this thread. So few of these have been sold it is possible your dealer's shop has not seen one of these problems yet, so it might be helpful if they scratch their heads over it. Let us know how it goes. I am at 1350 miles and still OK. Somewhere (maybe in another thread here or the Kona thread) I saw someone developed the problem at 9000 miles.
  6. niro525

    niro525 Member

    Was your climate control fan on? I hear a slight knocking sound coming from my Niro's climate control. When I turn off the climate control, the knocking goes away. It was something I heard faintly in the garage and nothing like the recordings I've heard here on this forum.
    Andrew Le likes this.
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  8. wizziwig

    wizziwig Active Member

    Looks like a couple more owners running into same motor defect I had on my car:

  9. This is disturbingly common. I wonder if there is any correlation with usage style since it does seem to be addressed by replacing the motor. I drive fairly gently.

    Mine is fine so far (1600 miles) The worst would be if it kicked in after the powertrain warranty ends at 100k miles. I like the first video; too bad there was not a way to force the frame integration time so the sunny areas saturated and we could see the innards more.

    How many miles do you have on your new motor, Wizzi?
  10. MartyDow

    MartyDow Active Member

    So, I heard it for the first time today, at 7,126 miles. What, if anything, is the concensus opinion one should do now? I must admit I have little confidence in my Kia dealer to service this car...
  11. mf989

    mf989 Member

    I had my motor replaced for this, even with new *711 part number, I am noticing noise returning — a bit different as it is only noticeable at higher speeds and not heard at slow (<20mph) as was before the replacement. In my opinion Kia has not solved this issue and do not assume a motor replacement with new PN is a sure fix.
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  13. wizziwig

    wizziwig Active Member

    Can you get a recording of your high speed noise?

    I've got about 2000 miles on the new 711 motor. Haven't noticed anything at higher speeds except some really annoying high pitched chirping/ringing/squealing from the inverter when slowly applying accelerator in 35-55 mph range. It starts/stops as you pass certain pedal positions. One of these days I'll have endure a trip to a KIA dealer to test drive another Niro to see if this is considered normal. I posted some recordings over in the UK forum.

    While I no longer hear the low-speed knocking noise that started this thread, I do hear a soft pulsing sound when slowly accelerating from standstill with wheels turned. Not sure if this is early onset of the knocking noise returning or something unrelated. Time will tell but I'm also very skeptical that KIA has really solved this problem.
  14. Dave M

    Dave M New Member

    So happy I’ve found this forum with all the good sharing of info, but WOW! I’ve gone from such joy in the transition to EV to sudden concern and now bordering on buyers remorse...

    Sent from my iPad using Inside EVs
  15. I had the same experience when I found this thread. There is a similar one about the Hyundai Kona too.

    FWIW, it is unclear if this affects all vehicles and some people are up to 10k miles with no problem. My vehicle is at about 2100 miles and so far so good.....
  16. niro525

    niro525 Member

    I'm the kind of person that likes to be told the view is nice, but the hike is killer so wear good shoes. Rather than the view is nice, don't worry the hike is easy. Realistic expectations of knowing how to prepare vs caught off guard and unprepared.
    Dave M likes this.
  17. Jim Hindson

    Jim Hindson New Member

  18. Jim Hindson

    Jim Hindson New Member

    I started getting a "clicking" noise around 10,000 km (Kia eNiro SX in Canada). I listened to the tape that was posted and although the noise is similar it is more like a clicking than a tapping sound in my case. I do not buy that it is "normal" as I had a Kia Soul EV for 60,000 km and never heard anything like this noise. I will try it in neutral as suggested. I saw on one post somewhere that the noise went away when the half shafts were rotated by 180 degrees (does this make any sense??). A mechanic friend said that they should put microphones (ears) on the suspected components and then drive the car and move the ears as necessary until they find out which component is causing the sound.
  19. I suspect it is the same root problem other Niro owners have experienced (there are only so many places in an electric car that a nearly delta function sound with a speed dependent frequency could be generated that varies with speed) though it is unclear what fraction of vehicles develop this problem. Some have had their motors and sometimes reduction gears replaced with positive results, though I wonder if a high percentage of vehicles experience this problem eventually and it remains to be seen how well the repairs will last. I will shut up now and let people who have actually had to deal with it chime in.

    In the meantime, you might also want to look at a thread on the topic on the Kona side, since the have larger numbers of models sold and earlier. It is not clear if the electric motor and reduction gear are exactly the same since the part numbers are different, but they probably are essentially the same. Maybe slightly different bolt patterns .

    Last edited: Feb 2, 2020
  20. ITown

    ITown Member

    3000 miles now and still no sound like that. Not looking forward to the day that I have to deal with this. But hopefully with my low mileage driving habits, I don't have to deal with this until Kia has formalized a playbook to resolve the problem.
  21. daveinca

    daveinca New Member

    Hi All -- I posted in this thread a few weeks back and I finally have a dealer appointment this week. I currently have about 550 miles on my Niro Premium and here is my situation:

    1) "Tapping" sound - As other folks have mentioned, it sounds more like a baseball card in the spokes than clicking. It is noticeable decelerating in any regen mode from about 40 MPH - 0, even when VESS is on (though that covers it up a bit). I can also hear it driving around parking lots slowly, and also under acceleration (although less noticeable due to wind/road/other noises). Most times it takes a few miles of driving before it starts up. The tapping frequency definitely increases and decreases with speed, hence the baseball card in the spokes analogy.

    2) High-pitched "cricket sound" - I also have the high pitched cricket-like sound that has been described on the Kona forum I think. It's basically a very irritating noise that is evident during all acceleration and deceleration. If I barely press to the "gas" pedal I can reduce it. It's loud enough that I literally cannot drive the car with the windows down at all because the sound bounces off of parked cars, walls, etc. I've had people walking on the street turn and look to see what was making the noise.

    Needless to say, I'm pretty upset. The car I test drove had neither of these issues. So, my question for the forum is how should I proceed during this initial dealer contact? Currently planning to take the tech out and recreate the sounds, but I'm fully expecting the "that's normal" response. If that's the case, I am planning to spend more time recording the sounds and giving them forum links before I make a second appointment. I absolutely under no circumstances will allow them to pass this off as normal, but curious if anyone has any other suggestions on how to proceed.

    EXTREMELY frustrating because this is an awesome car, but these two issues are making it borderline undriveable.
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2020
  22. mf989

    mf989 Member

    Have them listen to your vehicle first to clearly identify the sound they are listening for. You ride with them and make sure they are reproducing it. Then go test drive a new vehicle with them (dont let them do it without you) and have them note how it is different. If it's different, lesser, etc, they cannot claim it is supposed to be like that.

    Ask them to open a Techline case with Kia noting the noise and how it is not present in a new vehicle to ask for next steps. Kia will certainly know about it and respond with diagnostic next steps. I suggest not mentioning much about this forum or motor replacements, otherwise you will sound like someone looking for a problem because you read about it.

    Focus on the noise being an indicator of a mechanical issue, and not the annoyance of the sound itself because a noise is not necessarily a problem unto itself since all machines make some noise. Similar to an ICE car, if you heard grinding gears, that would be a clue to a greater and more serious abnormal and potentially unsafe condition. Since it is an electric car we have no library of bad sounds to draw from, who are they to know what is detrimental vs normal? Kia will lead them down the right path. This is warrantee money for the dealer, so they should be motivated to follow up.
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2020
    Esprit1st likes this.
  23. yvesalf

    yvesalf New Member

    HI i had the same gear noise issue since first week. My dealer ordered a new gearbox and replace it without any problems. Two months had passed and the noise has not return. Annoying but at least they care for their clients. BTW i live in northern Canada.
    Andrew Le and electriceddy like this.

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