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No compression in 1 cylinder

Hi everyone,

I have a 2009 Kia Borrego 4x4 SUV with 8 cylinders. Just this week the engine suddenly stop working. I mechanic friend from church did a diagnostic test and told me cylinder 2 has no compression due to the valve spring not shutting. He recommended i take the car to a Kia dealership to have it fixed since he is not comfortable with the engine and brand. He thinks the cost may run between $1700 to $3000 depending on dealer markup and additional diagnostic tests they may run. What advice can you guys give me. I can’t afford a new car at the moment. If I can fix this and run it for another 2-3 years i will be happy. Also please comment on the cost estimate from my mechanic friend. Thanks.

I’d definitely take it for other opinions, either to a dealer or independent mechanic.

None of us can tell you what it may cost to fix the car without a definitive diagnosis of the problem first. Find out what the issue is before going down the “I can’t afford a new vehicle” path.

Good luck.

sold in 2009 and dropped in 2011. uses 48v dohc v8. hmm, broke valve spring could cause low compression in cyl and its better than a broke valve which causes major damage. i dont know specs of ohc design if it uses finger followers or if cam is on top of valve so changing a broken spring could be hard or real hard. wiki seemed to say the motor was shared with the hyundai genesis.

Does it just run badly or is there any noise associated with it?

If there is any substantial noise (or was) then my concern would be that the broken spring caused the valve keepers to fall off and the valve then dropped into the cylinder. This would mean a new engine.

Considering the age and miles(?) I would not repair or replace one cylinder head. Both should be done.

IF (and i say IF) the valve has not dropped into the cylinder then there is the possibility of using compressed air to hold the valves in place and replace the spring only. That would be the easiest and cheapest route.

Any decent mechanic other than a dealer should be able to replace a head or a spring only.

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Valve spring or piston return spring maybe ? Piston return springs are not really that hard to change and you can do some great preventive maintenance as well while doing it such as changing the head gasket and valve cover gasket.

Interesting engine. 6 valves per cyl. and uses springs to return the pistons. Any links to this innovative engine.


Honda also used this in their older engines I think the engine in the civic and Del Sol had piston return springs and when these broke the engine just ran very roughly or didn’t run at all

Someone drank the “Kool-Ade”. Sorry dude/dudette I may not turn wrenches professionally, but really? Does stock them?

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Oh no… I have been trying to do some mental “personal growth exercises” lately, to try and become less of a smart ass, that being said, I am sitting on some humorous verbal Kung Fu at the moment. I am forced to agree with PvtPublic to raise an eyebrow and crack a smile here. We are venturing into strange mechanical lands with piston return springs and 6 valves per cylinder…

I am hopeful I / we are not challenged further in this dispute over the existence of these mechanical conditions. But I must clearly voice a “No” to those conditions being extant here and on this engine.

i recall the other poster who had a broken spring on his caddy 3.6 and was trying to move the camshaft to get the spring out. he had some nice pics of attempt. no word on success. maybe the poster here can provide more details on the real issue with their motor

@cdaquila - This is one of two identical threads.

You don’t remember the FUBAR - SNAFU engine
6 valves per cylinder
Piston return springs instead of connecting rods
4 Spark plugs per cylinder, 1 for each cycle, intake compression power exhaust
Would run on moonshine or gasoline
300 HP per liter

Thanks everyone for your comments and suggestions. I plan on taking the car to the local Kia dealership and have them give me an estimate as well as their diagnosis. I will share the info on this thread once I am done. Afterwards, I will need to decide if I should have the dealership do the work or another (read cheaper) engine shop perform the work. Cheers.