What you need to know about the ESC system in you Hyundai.

page h66

The Electronic Stability Control System (ESC)  

The ESC helps stabilize your vehicle during cornering maneuvers.  It checks where you are steering and where the vehicle is actually going.  The system applies braking pressure to any one of the brakes and intervenes in the engine management system to assist the driver with keeping the vehicle on its intended path.  Basically it tries to help the car heading in the direction you want it to go instead of sliding somewhere else.

ESC is a handy safety feature but will not be held responsible for any unsafe driving.  Never drive too fast for the road conditions or too quickly when cornering.. Excessive speed in turns, abrupt maneuvers, and hydroplaning on wet surfaces can result in severe accidents.

"When the ESC is blinking, this indicates the ESC is active.  Drive slowly and NEVER attempt to accelerate."

Driving with the ESC

When the ignition switch is in the ON position, the ESC and the ESC OFF indicator lights illuminate for approximately three seconds. After both lights go off, the ESC is enabled.  

When the ESC is blinking, this indicates the ESC is active.  Drive slowly and NEVER attempt to accelerate.  When the ESC system is active you may experience some of the following:

  • When you apply your brakes under conditions which may lock the wheels, you may hear sounds from the brakes, or feel a corresponding sensation in the brake pedal. This is normal and it means your ESC is active. 

  • When the ESC activates, the engine may not respond to the accelerator as it does under routine conditions. 

  • If the Cruise Control was in use when the ESC activates, the Cruise Control automatically disengages. The Cruise Control can be reengaged when the road conditions allow.

  • When moving out of the mud or driving on a slippery road, the engine RPM (revolutions per minute) may not increase even if you press the accelerator pedal deeply. This is to maintain the stability and traction of the vehicle and does not indicate a problem.

Disabling ESC

NEVER turn the ESC off while the ESC indicator light is blinking or you may lose control of the vehicle.

The ESC OFF mode should only be used briefly to help free the vehicle if stuck in snow or mud by temporarily stopping operation of the ESC to maintain wheel torque.  Turning the ESC off does not affect ABS or standard brake system operation.

If you want to disable the ESC you have 2 options:  

To disable the traction control function of ESC (engine management) but maintain the brake control function (braking management) simply press the ESC OFF button.  When disabled the ESC OFF indicator light will illuminate on the dash.  If you are driving, only turn the ESC off while on a flat road when the ESC system is not active. 

To disable BOTH traction and stability control press and hold the ESC OFF button for more than 3 seconds.  An ESC OFF indicator light and message “Traction and Stability Control Diabled” illuminates and a warning chime sounds.  

Upon restarting the ESC will automatically turn on again. 

Important things to note: 

Driving with wheels and tires with different sizes may cause the ESC system to malfunction. Never drive the vehicle with different sized wheels and tires installed.

To prevent damage to the transmission: Do not allow wheel(s) of one axle to spin excessively while the ESC, ABS, and parking brake warning lights are displayed. The repairs would not be covered by the vehicle warranty. Reduce engine power and do not spin the wheel(s) excessively while these lights are displayed.

*This information came from the 2019 Santa Fe Owner’s manual section 5 page 31.  Take it as a general guideline for other models but if you want to be 100% properly informed you will have to do some reading for yourself.  

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