Are Kias Expensive to Maintain?

Are Kias Expensive to Maintain

Since Kias have high-reliability ratings, it is typically cheaper to maintain Kias than a typical car. Its annual repair cost is around $464. This is significantly cheaper than the average vehicle's maintenance budget.

Let's dive deeper into what affects how expensive Kias are to maintain.

Key Takeaways

  • Kias are cheap to maintain, with an average annual repair cost of $464
  • Kia has a reliability rating of 4 out of 5
  • While Kias are cheap to maintain, different models and years could have different issues that affect this price

Is Kia reliable?

Yes, Kia is reliable. Although it had a poor reputation when it first came to the US market, Kia is now considered one of the most reliable brands.

Its overall reliability rating is 4.0 out of 5, significantly higher than the average of the 32 car brands surveyed.

The website RepairPal uses data collected from its drivers to determine the reliability of car brands. It considers various factors, such as the average cost and the frequency of needed repairs.

Vehicles with high ratings, such as those from Kia, are more likely to avoid experiencing mechanical issues.

Unlike other car brands, Kia offers a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain and a five-year or bumper-to-bumper warranty.

This is significantly better than the other offerings. Most manufacturers also provide a three-year or five-year powertrain warranty. However, Kia's warranty is significantly longer.

Your vehicle will likely run well for a long time if it is regularly maintained. The manufacturer's warranty will cover most major issues if it doesn't.

Is Kia Expensive to Maintain?

Although it's cheaper to maintain a Kia than a typical car, it's still important to keep in mind that the maintenance costs vary depending on the make and model of the vehicle.

Kia Optima

Reliability Rating: 4 out of 5

Annual Maintenance Cost: $355

Repair Frequency: 0.2 times per year

Kia Sorento

Reliability Ratings: 4 out of 5

The Annual Maintenance Cost: is $463

Repair Frequency: 0.3 times annually

Kia Forte Koup

Reliability Ratings: 4 out of 5

The Annual Maintenance Cost: is $553

Repair Frequency: 0.2 times per year

Common Kia Repairs

According to data collected by Car Complaints, various models of Kia (like 2014 Sorento, 2012 Sorento, 2013 Sorento, 2016 Sorento, and 2013 Optima) have experienced the highest number of complaints regarding their repairs.

The most common issues reported by the site's users were engine and transmission problems. These are some of the major issues reported.

Kia Sedona Faulty Alternator

Over the years, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has received over 350 complaints about the electrical system of the Kia Sedona.

Most of these are related to the car's faulty alternator. It can cost around $600 to replace the entire system and take longer to fix. The issue was most common in 2006, 2012, and 2015.

  • 2011 Optima with an average mileage of 102,000 miles suffering engine failure. They cost about $4,600 to fix.
  • 2012 Sorento engine failure with an average mileage of 73,000 miles and costs about $5,300 to fix.
  • 2013 Kia Sorento blown motor with an average mileage of 72,000 miles which costs about $5,700 to repair.

The numbers shown are estimates only for the repairs performed for a specific model year and make. It's essential to keep in mind that the costs can vary significantly between different years and models.

A survey revealed that a third of Americans could not afford to pay for an unexpected repair bill.

Why You Should Maintain Your Kia

Having your vehicle regularly maintained can help keep it in peak condition and prevent costly issues from arising. It can also improve the safety and value of your car.

If you don't properly maintain your Kia, not only does it waste the brand's value, but you're also exposing your vehicle to more wear and tear, which could result in significant problems in the future.

How Often Does a Kia Need Maintenance?

Oil Changes

Depending on the model of your vehicle, it's usually recommended that you have your engine oil changed at least every 5,000 to 7,500 miles. Doing so can help remove dirt and grime build-up on the engine's walls.

An oil change for a Kia costs $25 to $50 on average.

Tire Replacement

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) also recommends replacing your tires every six years, regardless of mileage.

Doing so can help prevent the tires from losing grip and handling poorly. Tires for Kias cost between $150 to $300.

Engine Replacement

Having a well-functioning engine can help keep your vehicle running smoothly for a long time.

If you're experiencing issues with your vehicle's engine, such as a cracked block, you should contact a professional mechanic to have it fixed. A Kia engine costs between $2,500 to $4,000.


If your vehicle's paint job is visibly discolored or peeling, it's time to repair it. A professional paint job can help prevent corrosion and structural damage and boost the car's resale value.

However, this process can be very time-consuming and requires specialized equipment. A paint job costs between $1,000 to $5,000.

Windshield Replacement

A cracked windshield can seriously affect your vision and cost you around $351. If the crack extends significantly, it's essential to have it fixed. It would help if you never attempted to replace a windshield yourself.

Extended Warranty

One of the best ways to keep your new or certified pre-owned Kia running smoothly is to follow the manufacturer's recommended maintenance schedule.

Although the brand's warranty on new and certified pre-owned cars will eventually cover certain defects, this coverage will eventually expire.

An extended warranty can help cover the cost of repairs that you might not be able to afford on your own. This type of coverage can be purchased from third-party providers.

An independent extended warranty company can provide you with a broader range of coverage options and a better network of repair shops. There are several reliable providers available.

Which Kia Models Are More Reliable?

The following are the most reliable Kia brands available on the market;

Kia Optima

Over the years, the Kia Optima has gotten numerous upgrades and updates. When it debuted in the 2000s, many people regarded it as a poor performer in terms of reliability, performance, and styling.

After experiencing various issues during its initial launch, the brand quickly recovered and developed a car that is regarded as one of the most reliable vehicles on the market.

Although The Drive advises against buying the first- and second-generation models, the third, fourth, and fifth-generation variants of the Optima are still great cars that will last for a long time.

Kia Telluride

Based on the positive reactions and praise it has received from consumers, the new Telluride is regarded as one of the best small SUVs on the market.

Its simple yet powerful engine, good looks, and comfortable seating are some of the factors that have made it one of the most desirable vehicles on the market.

In addition, the Telluride comes with a 10-year drivetrain and a 5-year basic warranty.

Kia Sportage

Before the Telluride, the Sportage was the brand's go-to small SUV. Unfortunately, it had a rough start, as various issues and poor quality led to it becoming one of the most unwanted cars on the market.

The Sportage has been relatively inexpensive and easy to maintain, making it one of the most dependable vehicles on the market.

Like the Telluride, new Sportages from the brand come with a 5-year basic warranty and a 100,000-mile drivetrain warranty.

Do Kia Cars Last?

Your ride will eventually wear out like other cars, trucks, and SUVs. The brand's reliability has significantly improved in the past decade, and it competes with Honda and Toyota. Even newer models are known to last well past 200,000 miles.

Is Kia More or Less Reliable Than Toyota?

Over the years, the reliability of some of the brand's newer models has been similar to that of Toyota.

However, it depends on how the previous owner handled their vehicle. If they did an excellent job of keeping their car, it should last a long time.

Why Are Kias So Cheap?

The prices of some of the brand's newer models have been similar to those of Toyota, Honda, and Hyundai.

While they aren't as cheap as when they were first introduced, they are still excellent value for consumers.

What’s Wrong with Kia Cars?

Cars from Kia are some of the best on the road. The automotive press has praised the company's latest model, the Telluride SUV.

Older models, however, are less desirable due to issues such as poor build quality and how their interiors feel.


Kia is an affordable, reliable car brand with models for every taste. Their reliability rating is 4 out of 5, making them more reliable than the average car. The annual repair cost of $464 makes Kia a cheap car to buy and maintain.