Hyundai Santa Fe Fuel Door Release Problem And How To Fix it

Are you concerned about your Hyundai Santa Fe fuel door release problem?

It can be quite an annoying issue for some vehicle owners. For instance, the gas cap release on Hyundai Santa Fe may be broken, which leads to this problem. It may cause the tank door to get stuck or fail to open.

If this is the issue you’ve been experiencing, worry no more – we’ve got some answers for you!

Here are the things you can do about a Hyundai Santa Fe fuel door release issue – even without the help of a mechanic. So, let’s get started!

hyundai santa fe fuel door release problem

Common Causes Of A Hyundai Santa Fe Fuel Door Release Problem

It’s never fun when you have an issue with the gas cap release on Hyundai Santa Fe. Or if the fuel door simply won’t open as it should.

If this is the situation you are in, it may help to take a look at the possible ways on how to open stuck gas tank door without causing more problems to your vehicle.

The fuel door leads to your car’s gas cap. This cap is then unscrewed, and it is connected to the gas tank. When you fill up your vehicle with gas, you need to make sure you can easily open the fuel door, unscrew the gas cap, and that it should be easy to close the door back in.

Otherwise, there is not much protection for your gas tank.

However, it is not always the case. Sometimes, your fuel door tends to get stuck. Let’s take a look at the possible reasons why this happens, so you can have a better understanding of how to fix it.

For instance, the fuel door cable may be loose. As a result, it is not capable of doing its job. On the other hand, when the door cable is nice and taut, this keeps the door closed and securely shut.

Also, the fuel door latch may be broken. The latches allow the door to stay in place instead of getting misaligned. When the latch comes loose or has damage, then the fuel door gets out of alignment and can be difficult to open or close.

And lastly, there may be a malfunctioning door hinge issue. The hinge lets the door swing closed or open. But when the hinge is bent, or the bushings and pin are quite stiff or loose, then this causes the door to get stuck.

Fixing The Issue On A Fuel Door Release Problem

fixing the issue on a fuel door release problem

If the issue is severe, then you will need the help of a professional mechanic to fix your fuel door release. With a thorough inspection, this can help identify the cause of the problem. Thus, the expert can easily get the door fixed.

A mechanic will search for busted latches on your fuel door, as well as any loose cables that may be causing the door to get stuck.

Although this repair work is not much of a hazard in terms of safety, it is not an immediate concern. However, it does impact the appearance of your vehicle. Hence, it would be good to get it fixed before the door becomes completely damaged.

But if you want to open your fuel door manually without the help of a mechanic, these tips should come in handy.

1. Locate the manual release control.

You should be able to find a manual release button for your fuel door, which is right behind it. This is typical with fuel doors that are electrically-operated.

2. Unlock the door.

Once you have found the button, then you can simply press this to unlock your fuel door. Check the manual if you are unable to locate the button.

3. Pry your fuel door.

If the steps above did not work, then you can try to pry the fuel door open. You may use a spatula (stiff ones) or a credit card you are no longer using to try to release the latch by prying it open. Slide the card against the fuel door cover’s back side. By doing so, the latch should be able to release.

Other Issues With Fuel Door Release

There are some people who have an issue with the gas tank not closing. If this is the case, it could be that the fuel door cable is loose or the door latch is broken. A replacement for these components should help to fix the problem easily.

Bottom Line

A Hyundai Santa Fe fuel door release problem can be a pain when you just want things to work out fine.

Fortunately, there are several things you can do to fix the problem. Even by fixing it manually and without the help of a professional mechanic, you should be able to get it done in no time.

We hope the tips we have shared with you have been helpful, so you can fully address this issue and worry no more about it.

5 thoughts on “Hyundai Santa Fe Fuel Door Release Problem And How To Fix it”

  1. Have a 2021 Hyundai Sante Fe. Fuel door will not release upon pushing it as instructed. After applying heat from a hair dryer, thinking it may have been frozen, it finally opened. But once I purchased gas and closed it, it will not reopen. I have made sure all the doors are unlocked both my the remote and my the rlock release button on the door console. Still it will not open. I do not read where, if any, emergency release button on the inside of the vehicle behind the fuel door exists. Is there anything else I should do before taking it to the dealer ? I do not want to continue messing with it to make it worse or break anything. Thank you.

    • I had the same problem and managed to find a dealer willing to take a quick look at it. Turns out there there is a small electric motor that does the job and it was very dirty. They cleaned the motor and shazam, it’s working fine. As important as gas is to run a car I don’t know why Hundai hasn’t done something about this. A service bulletin, putting it on a routine maintenance list, something. Mine is a 2021 Santa Fe also with 28k miles and the malfunction was a complete surprise.

      • Hi John,

        It sounds like you had an issue with a small electric motor in your 2021 Hyundai Santa Fe that was causing a problem, and it was resolved by cleaning the motor. It’s not uncommon for components to get dirty or experience wear and tear over time, leading to unexpected malfunctions. It’s fortunate that the issue was identified and resolved by the dealer.

        Manufacturers often release service bulletins to address common issues or provide guidance on maintenance. However, not all issues may be covered by bulletins, and routine maintenance recommendations can vary.

        It’s worth noting that while modern cars undergo extensive testing and quality control, occasional unexpected issues can still arise. If you believe that this particular issue is common and should be addressed more proactively by Hyundai, providing feedback to the manufacturer or the dealer can be helpful.

        In any case, regular maintenance and inspections can help catch potential problems before they become major issues. If you have concerns about specific components, it’s a good idea to discuss them with your dealer or consult the vehicle’s manual for recommended maintenance schedules.

      • Where was the small electric motor located? I can’t get my door to open. I’m at the dealership now and they can’t seem to get it open either.

  2. There is no electric motor for the fuel door on a 2021 Santa Fe. The spring loaded plunger latch won’t release. It is broken in the closed (compressed) position. I used a plastic auto trim removal prybar tool that didn’t harm the paint. I just pried the door open per directions I got over the phone from a Hyundai service manager. Luckily, I had the tool at home. It’s now in the Santa Fe for the next time this occurs. I’ll have the spring loaded plunger latch replaced. You can get these tool kits for about $7 – $10 at Amazon or Harbor Freight, etc.


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