Hyundai Won't Accelerate due to Throttle Position Switch Problem

Hyundai Won't Accelerate due to Throttle Position Switch Problem

Published by editor 
Last Updated May 18, 2018 

Kia or Hyundai vehicles may fail to accelerate due to problems with the throttle position switch. When the driver presses the gas pedal the maximum speed that car be reached is about 10 or 15 mph. Some symptos include that the engine has no power when you prss the gas pedal or that the RPMs will not go past 2000. 

Is your Kia / Hyundai refusing to accelerate when you press the gas pedal? In this article, we will discuss common problems that can cause Kia and Hyundai vehicles to not accelerate. In one situation a Kia was only accelerating to about 15 mph and would not go any faster than that. 

The first warning that you may get is the check engine light will come on. Soon after you may notice that the engine or vehicle speed does not increase when you press the gas pedal.  It is common as well for this issue to be intermittent at the early stages. It is easy to misdiagnose this problem as engine misfire. Thus changing the spark plugs is not going to solve the problem if the issues are caused by a faulty throttle position sensor. You may also wonder if the car is out of gas. That's why it is important to read the CEL

Common Causes

What can cause your car to not accelerate? 

  1. The most common issues that will make your vehicle not accelerate is a faulty throttle position switch also referred to as the TPS. The Throttle Position Sensor is a potentiometer that controls the throttle valve. Check with the dealer to see if they have an updated position switch. Replacing the TPS at the dealership can cost around $400-$600 USD depending on your location and model. Replacement TPS for Kia and Hyundai can also be purchased on eBay, here is a TPS listing for Kia/Hyundai
  2. A bad catalytic converter can also cause your Kia / Hyundai not to accelerate. Typically you can get to speeds over 50mph when the catalytic converter is defective, but it may take a while for the car to get up to that speed. When the catalytic converter gets clogged it creates excessive backpressure, and thus the vehicle loses power. You can have a muffler shop perform a backpressure test on your vehicle. This will confirm if the catalytic converter is defective or not. Replacing cat converters can be expensive. They can cost close to $1,000 if you want an OEM catalytic converter but aftermarket units cost only $200-$300 USD at a muffler shop. If you are up to the challenge you can order a universal catalytic converter online for under $100 and replace it yourself. 


How to Replace Throttle Position Sensor

Step 1: Open the hood. 

Step 2: Locate the electronic throttle body. The throttle body is mounted on the intake manifold assembly.Hyundai Kia Engine Has No Power / Very Weak

Step 3: Remove the air intake hose.Faulty Throttle Position Switch?

Step 4: Disconnect the electrical connector from the TPS.

Step 5: Remove the 4 bolts on the TPS using a 10 mm socket.

Step 6: Reinstall in reverse order. Tighten the bolts to 11.5 Nm.

Possible Fault Codes

Several fault codes may be present when the vehicle fails to accelerate. You can use a basic code reader (Hint: Check out Amazon Best Selling Code Readers) to retrieve the codes from your car. 

Here is the list of codes that were triggered by a defective TPS. There may be other fault codes that point to a faulty throttle possion sensor. Engine won't rev past 2000 RPMP0123 - Throttle Position Sensor/Switch A Circuit High Input

Car Engine Hesitates when pressing gas pedalP0222 - OBD-II Trouble Code: Throttle/Pedal Position Switch/Sensor B Circuit Low Input

Engine shuts off when idlingP2101 - Throttle Actuator Control Motor Circuit Range/Performance

Emergency Tip

If you are experiencing this problem but are far away from home and there is no mechanic that can check out your car right away try this tip. 

Turn off the car and remove the key. Let it sit for at least five seconds. Start the car and drive it but when you press the gas pedal, move your foot slowly and gradually. This may allow you to get your car back home until you can get it checked or have the codes read. 

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