We have a Hyundai i10, bought second hand in May, one previous owner, 19,000 miles. Car has been driving like new up till last week. We were given two identical keys, neither electric, and last week there was an occasion when the 'spare' key was used. We're not sure if this made a difference, but the engine would not start, and would instead make pft, pft, pft noise as if it was trying to get going.

We then waited till we had the 'regular' key back and tried with this. Same problem. Through trial and error we discovered that the car would start on a second or third attempt, especially if the key was turned slowly. Very occasionally it's started first time.

We took the car to the garage (Arnold Clark) today and have been told after diagnostics that there is nothing wrong with it, and that it started for them every time with both keys. (They then tried to sell us some other things we weren't interested in).

What should we do now? The car has always started and ran smoothly up till last week. Should we go to another garage? Should we keep driving and just resign ourselves to awkwardly having to start the car each time? I'm concerned in case the car is showing a sign of deterioration and may fail to start altogether at somepoint, or break down.

Edit: Thank you for your advice! We just went to collect the car from Arnold Clark and it wouldn't start at all! So they've had no choice but to 'take it back' as its still on their premises. Will see what the outcome is.

Second Edit: Thanks for warranty comments, unfortunately for us the car is 7 years old! Took it to AC as we'd purchased it from them so recently.

  • This behavior is not normal, and you should consult with another garage, either a Hyundai or auto electric specialist. Commented Jul 23, 2018 at 16:08
  • 1
    My car did the same thing (though it always started on the second attempt) and all it needed was a new fuel pump relay.
    – Al_
    Commented Jul 23, 2018 at 20:09
  • My personal first step for every problem involving electronics: Replace or recharge the battery. One could even temporarily connect a good battery with jumper cables to help diagnosis
    – Martin
    Commented Jul 23, 2018 at 21:22
  • And to answer your questions about the key: which key you use has no effect on starting, as long as it turns you're fine. Also the way how the key is rotated (slow/fast) does not matter. Its a simple electrical switch, just think of it as a light switch that needs to be flipped.
    – MadMarky
    Commented Jul 24, 2018 at 8:56

1 Answer 1


Arnold Clark is a new/used car dealership chain, they have service departments but frankly they aren't a place I'd take a car to unless it was under a warranty from them and I had no other choice.

If this is under warranty from Hyundai then take it to a Hyundai dealer other than them and they should take care of it. If it isn't under warranty then find an independent mechanic which specializes or at least has experience with Hyundai cars for a second opinion.

  • plus one for first paragraph...
    – Solar Mike
    Commented Jul 23, 2018 at 16:26
  • 1
    Considering Hyundai UK has a five year, unlimited mileage warranty period, as long as the vehicle is not five years old (assuming as not, considering only 19k miles), this should be a covered warranty item. Commented Jul 23, 2018 at 16:37
  • It's a reasonable bet @Paulster2. The i10's been produced for 10 years, and low miles per year isn't unusual for a city car, so it may or may not be under warranty. The OP should be aware that the warranty stays with the car, not the original owner.
    – GdD
    Commented Jul 23, 2018 at 17:44

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