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I'm looking at a used 2003 Elantra that's in pretty good shape (99% sure I'm buying it for my daughter). Car had 1 owner and is at 97k miles. Here's the two issues I did find:

- Engine bay has a whine (in belt area) that goes away when throttle is pressed a bit. Move the revs up to 8-900 rpm or so and it goes away. For other '03 owners out there -- when the A/C compressor is activated (and car is sitting) is there a whining noise? Saw this reported elsewhere on the web? I'm thinking that maybe the compressor's clutch is locked and that's causing this issue on the car I'm inspecting? I was not able to get the engine's idle to change when hitting the dash A/C button. It was a cold day here so hard to tell if the A/C really works OK? But on other car's I've been testing, hitting the A/C button usually causes a change in the engine's idle...

- Other minor issue: Brake pedal pulses a bit -- very likely warped front rotors? Scanning other threads/comments posed on the web - seems to be a common issue, so not worried about getting it addressed via a local shop.

Any thoughts???

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>Other notes as fyi:<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<

Everything else on the car looks pretty good - no water in the spare tire well, interior is nice and clean and no cigarette smell or related discoloration of the headliner, overall condition of the body is good (other than a few minor dings), muffler has a little rust but not any worse than other cars we own in the 6 year old range, car drives nice, handling was fine.

I was able to verify the t-belt and water pump had been changed at 70k miles (via carfax report) -- will contact a local dealer to see if I can get other mtce history via the VIN #. This car is being sold thru a local dealer --so can't talk to the original owner directly...
squeal is serp belts.

50 buck fix.

03 with 100k on the clock is abouth a 2500 dollar car.

don't pay more than that


oh and the pulse, you are right

ebay rotors or advance auto, you'll be fine
Also check the alternator belt tightener bolt. Some can work loose. Also, depending on the build date, check for any TSB repairs. There are several that come to mind: AT shift flare, 3800-4200 rpm hang and high ambient temp hesitation are 3 that the car is prone to have. Also check the fluids. If it is an AT, the SP-III fluid, which is a dealer item only is required and anything else eats the trans internals. The MT takes a GL4 fluid, not a GL5 or combo GL4 and GL5. The exhaust should be OK if it is the stock stainless piece.

As far as recalls, that year might not have any. There are a couple regarding the exhaust manifold cracking and a revised brake line at the master cylindar that is on the older cars, but that is something to check on. The airbag module is in the center console under the cup holders and it can fail if there is any spilt liquid getting to it. Make sure that is clean and dry.
Thx folks - we did end up buying this car. FYI - The whine was coming from something I never expected -- the oil filter. Found it using an automotive stethoscope -- we believe it's the check valve inside that's vibrating. Only happens once car is warmed up and at very low RPM. Yes very strange but it's definitely coming from the filter...
You might want to check to see why the check valve in the filter is vibrating. Is it an OEM filter? Hyundai has a TSB about the oiling on the cars that when the engine has a aftermarket filter, engine noises are possible. HMA suggests only use OEM filters.

Also I'd do some further checking to see if there is any sludge buildup in the engine. Popping the valve cover off is one way to physically look at the internals. That may be due to the check valve vibration.
yeah the check valves on frams especially will starve the top end of oil and cause such nasty HLA noise its not even funny.
nice buy.. sounds like it's not too bad all round.

a few minor fixups and away you go.
Welcome to the club!
Just don't use belt dressing

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