Hyundai Motor America is currently in the legal crosshairs following allegations of a malfunctioning oil pump in certain vehicle models. The complaint document alleges that the Hyundai oil pump problems presents a significant fire risk to drivers.
The class action lawsuit alleges that a design flaw within the oil pump controller can short-circuit and overheat. This results in a safety concern as the oil surrounding the pump may overheat and combust.
Truth is, many are unaware that motor oil can ignite and burn when subjected to temperatures ranging from 300° to 400° Fahrenheit. Highlighting the concern over this defect, and the importance of this class action lawsuit.
In fact, this lawsuit comes on the heels of a recall announced by Hyundai and its subsidiary Kia, who have recalled over 90,000 vehicles suspected of having this issue.
The lawsuit, Franz v. Hyundai Motor America has been filed that aims to bring relief for owners of the 2023-2024 Hyundai Palisade, 2023 Hyundai Tucson, 2023 Hyundai Sonata, 2023 Hyundai Elantra and 2023 Hyundai Kona vehicles with defective oil pumps.
Let’s dig into the concerns surrounding the defective oil pump, and what this potential fire hazard means for Hyundai owners affected by this defect.
Lawsuit Alleges Hyundai Oil Pump Problems Originate From a Faulty Controller
According to the complaint, specific Hyundai and Kia vehicles were produced with defective oil pumps. In short, the electronic controller for the oil pump, known as the “Idle Stop & Go” system, contains defective components from the supplier.
More specifically, Hyundai describes the problem as a damaged printed circuit board inside the transmission electric oil pump for the Idle Stop & Go System.
For reference, the Hyundai Idle Stop and Go feature automatically turns off the engine when you’re not moving. For instance, when you approach a traffic light and stop, the engine shuts off. Yet, as you shift your foot from the brake to the gas pedal, the engine immediately restarts. The idea here is to help save on fuel.
As a result, the defective parts can short-circuit, leading to overheating of the oil pump and motor oil. This defect may cause the vehicle’s oil to overheat and catch fire. Given that oil is highly combustible, this poses a significant risk of ignition and fire danger to the vehicle occupants.
In fact, under normal operation, engine oil typically reaches temperatures ranging from 230°F to 260°F. All it takes for the motor oil to spontaneously combust is reaching a temperature of 300°F.
What Does an Oil Pump do in a Car?
A vehicles oil pump is an essential component that circulates engine oil with pressure to the engine’s rotating bearings, sliding pistons, and camshaft. This lubrication minimizes friction and wear, ensuring the engine operates both smoothly and efficiently.
However, if the oil pump overheats and fails, it can lead to insufficient lubrication, causing engine damage such as rod knock and catastrophic engine failure.
Didn’t Hyundai Issue a Recall For The Oil Pump Problem?
At the time of the recall, Hyundai confirmed four thermal incidents of melting oil pump components caused by the defect. However, the automaker was not aware of any injuries caused by the oil pump problem.
Should Hyundai Owners be Concerned?
Affected vehicle owners should be aware of possible dangers associated with this defect. As both Hyundai and Kia, have strongly recommended that owners of the impacted vehicles take precautionary measures by parking them outdoors and away from buildings or other structures. This is to mitigate the risk of fire until the oil pump issue is resolved.
Nevertheless, affected owners should also note that there have been reports of parts shortages, which may complicate the process of having the oil pump repaired under recall.
What Are The Symptoms of a Overheating Oil Pump?
A few weeks ago, I made an appointment to address the recent safety recall concerning the transmission electric oil pump (campaign 246 / NHTSA recall number 23V-526.) For added clarity – the dealer identified the vehicle, saw that it was part of the recall and scheduled me for an appointment to correct this important safety matter. Today I took the day off from work and this morning I showed up for my appointment 30 minutes early. I surrendered my vehicle and sat at the waiting area. After spending over two hours at the service center, I was informed that they do not have the part(s) needed to complete this recall and that they have only today ordered it. Moreover, in talking to the advisor, he seemed perplexed at my disappointment, claiming that this is their standard operating procedure. Again, I would like to highlight the fact that I lost a day of work. I would now lose an additional day of work once the part(s) is/are in. Per Hyundai’s recall language, this is a serious and somewhat dangerous matter. Lastly, I would think that if the part is not in stock, the service center should have contacted me in advance to delay the appointment. Even if that was not done, it should not take over two hours to discover that the part is missing – a few seconds, yes. Hours NO. I am sorry for the tone – however, I am beyond disappointed.NHTSA Complaint: 11546387
I have recently received a recall notice from Hyundai USA, stating that my 2023 Hyundai Palisade needs an immediate fix for transmission electric oil pump to avoid potential fire risk. It suggested that I should immediately reach out to the nearest dealer for a part replacement. However, I searched several dealer locations in WA and they do not have any availability within the next 60 days. The closest date I can see now available is at Dec. 11th., which is 3 months away. This is causing long-lasting concerns.NHTSA Complaint: 11544601
No fix available, no recall from Hyundai. A Chance of fire should give rise to attention given this problem. Lack of attention by Hyundai is terrible and the possibility of fire to vehicle and structures is unacceptable.NHTSA Complaint: 11539638
Hyundai Models Affected
The following models are affected by the oil pump defect.
- 2023 Hyundai Palisade
- 2024 Hyundai Palisade
- 2023 Hyundai Tucson
- 2023 Hyundai Sonata
- 2023 Hyundai Elantra
- 2023 Hyundai Kona
Status of the Hyundai Oil Pump Class Action Litigation
Franz v. Hyundai Motor America, Case No. 2:23-cv-07218, in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.
Filed by the law firm of: Poulin | Willey | Anastopoulo, LLC.
Questions About This Lawsuit?
MyCarVoice.com is not counsel or the settlement administrator in this class action lawsuit. Our goal is to inform owners of these vehicles of the recent lawsuit. This post will be updated when/if new suit information is released.
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