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2011 Hyundai Elantra transmission issue

I have a 2011 Hyundai Elantra Touring which I bought used (60,000 miles) 3 years ago. When I bought it, within a week I noticed that it shifted hard in the beginning. I took it back to the car dealer where I bought it from, asking them to get it fixed. We took it to numerous places and sometimes it did it and sometimes it didn’t…so frustrating and I began to be treated like I was a crazy woman and that I was making this all up. One place got codes but said since he wasn’t a Hyundai dealer, he didn’t know what they meant…I really got the run around. Fast forward to today, the shifting issue is happening more often. I have an appt with a couple of auto shops for diagnostic testing, but before I take it in, I want to know, besides the general “you need a new transmission” answer I might get, what other things could be wrong? I want to go in educated because I feel like as a woman I need to be equipped with knowledge. Any help would be appreciated.

Automatic transmission use really high fluid pressures to create enough force to shift the gears, and something wrong w/that is often the cause, often to do with hardening of the seals. I’d start with a proper transmission service, meaning for most vehicles dropping and cleaning the pan, sieving the old fluid for metal debris, and replacing the filter. New transmission fluid will have new seal conditioning chemicals and may be able to rejuvenate failing seals. Avoid a flush procedure unless it includes dropping the pan and replacing the filter. On some vehicles that’s not always possible though, and so the flush may be your only practical option. Hopefully that will fix the problem. If it helps but doesn’t solve it 100%, try it again after driving for a couple hundred miles.

Other common causes for this are

  • driveline problems after the transmission (differential, cv joints, driveshafts)
  • too high of idle rpm (if noticed when shifting from N to D)
  • faulty transmission solenoids
  • battery/charging system problems
  • wrong version of transmission software
  • something mechanical inside the transmission (e.g. clutch packs) is just plum worn out.

The advice recommended here is to first get a pre-purchase inspection from your own mechanic before buying a used car. Won’t be of help for this one, but be sure to do that on your next used car purchase. Best of luck, could well be something simple.

Get the trans fluid changed, not flushed, just changed.
Then cross your fingers.
IMHO 60k miles is the longest reasonable time to go without changing the fluid,
so I’d do it anyway.
In this Hyundai there is no pan to drop, no filter to change.
Just a plug/hole to drain; and a plug/hole to refill.
Make sure only a Hyundai specific fluid is used, no “one size fits all” stuff.

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Thanks for the information. The mechanic I just took it to didn’t get any codes. He recommended servicing the transmission by draining fluid and changing the filter… quote of $210…is that reasonable?

Thanks for the reply and the advice!

The price (in my area- NJ) would be reasonable.

Seems pretty reasonable to me.