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My daughter was driving her 2010 Soul in slow moving traffic with light snow. She pressed the brake pedal and had to veer to the right to miss the car in front of her--there seemed to be minimal braking. She was able to fully stop. When she started to move again, the traction light came on and there was some grinding noise but the brakes seemed to be working. She drove around a bit to make sure the brakes would work. She made sure the hand brake worked. The dealer hasn't been able to find anything wrong or any error reports from the car's computer. Has anyone else experienced this or similar problems? Thanks!
 

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The grinding noise is probably just the ABS kicking in. ABS can act funny in ice & snow. There may not be any problems with the brake system on the car. Perhaps you can take your daughter to an open lot somewhere and let her "play" in the snow, and get used to the braking.
 

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When the traction light comes on and you hear grinding and all that jazz, the car is doing what its supposed to. Minimal braking in snow.... yeah, that's because it's kinda slick.
 

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Sounds perfectly normal to me. If you aint got hardly any grip and the cars anti-lock system wont allow the wheels to lock up, the braking performance will be massively reduced. She needs to give a much bigger gap to the car in front in slippery weather. If she had been driving a car without such systems - the wheels would have locked up, the steering wouldnt have responded to allow her to swerve and she would have slid into and hit the car in front. The Soul did good.
 

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When she started to move again, the traction light came on and there was some grinding noise but the brakes seemed to be working.
That light will flash when the traction control kicks in. When starting out on slippery roads the car will monitor how fast the wheels are spinning. If one wheel spins faster than the other, the computer will apply the brake to the wheel that is spinning faster. This is to allow for better traction and keeps the vehicle in a straight line path. The grinding noise is the ABS pump supplying braking pressure to the wheel that is spinning too fast - and the light flashes to tell you the system is active. When coming to a stop, the ABS will pump the brakes to prevent the wheels from locking up and spinning out of control - this also produces a grinding noise that is perfectly normal. Allow for a minimum of 6-8 second distance in the winter. The dealer didn't find anything wrong because the car is doing what it is designed to do. Your salesman should have explained these systems, because it can be frightening to have them work for the first time if you are not familiar with the technology.
 

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it can be frightening to have them work for the first time if you are not familiar with the technology.
THAT is precisely why it's important to really learn how your car responds to extreme inputs. Who was it, Lombardi (?) who said "If you get in the end zone, act as though you've been there before". There is NOTHING that can prepare you for an evasive maneuver like actually practicing it, in a controlled situation, so you can see how you and your car will respond. Attend "vehicle dynamics training" at a local motorsports park. If you don't have one nearby, find an open empty deserted parking lot or dirt lot, make darned sure there's nothing to hit, and practice a swerve and a slide. See how your car responds. IDeally, do this with an instructor who can help you do it correctly, so you know what to do and what to expect.

Most people don't know that training exists, or think of a car as simply an appliance - plug it in, fuel it up, steer and brake, and that's all you need to know. Not true.

Not getting that practice in... and not meaning to sound at all crass or demeaning or ooverly critical... is somewhat irresponsible.
 

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My daughter was driving her 2010 Soul in slow moving traffic with light snow. She pressed the brake pedal and had to veer to the right to miss the car in front of her--there seemed to be minimal braking. She was able to fully stop. When she started to move again, the traction light came on and there was some grinding noise but the brakes seemed to be working. She drove around a bit to make sure the brakes would work. She made sure the hand brake worked. The dealer hasn't been able to find anything wrong or any error reports from the car's computer. Has anyone else experienced this or similar problems? Thanks!
Sounds like a greasy slippy road to me with too much speed for efficient stopping and acceleration

The ABS should have come on during the first stopping attempt and this would have made the common ABS grinding noise. The traction control would have kicked in and caused the ABS to come on (grinding noise) if too much wheel spin was detected durring the acceleration phase.

I agree with the other people who siad "practice".
Take a few pairs of old shoes or boots out to an empty parking lot and try to stop at and between them. Then try to do a simple slalom between them. I do this every year at the begining of the winter. AND I'm always shocked at how much I actually forget and need to remember again.
 

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My Soul is my first car with ABS and ESC in my harsh winter area, so I can relate to how different things are with those systems, and the need to practice. I follow all of the needed extra winter cautions while driving, so the Soul has done fairly well. However the other day I had no stopping power at all when approaching a light at a notoriously bad road near our airport, even when the systems kicked in.

I am a pilot, so I quickly switched over to evasive maneuver calcs instead of focusing on the brake issue- i.e., how in the heck do I avoid the cars traversing the intersection without a scratch- which thankfully I did. :)

Still scary stuff though! I admit, I do miss having control, and pumping the brakes by myself. Time for winter tires too- the stock Nexens are less than optimal, IMO.
 

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you can still pump the brakes up to the point where the antilock kicks in..... the antilock is just to help out and give you some steering when panic sets in and the pedal is rammed thru the floor.
 

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My Soul is my first car with ABS and ESC in my harsh winter area, so I can relate to how different things are with those systems, and the need to practice. I follow all of the needed extra winter cautions while driving, so the Soul has done fairly well. However the other day I had no stopping power at all when approaching a light at a notoriously bad road near our airport, even when the systems kicked in.

I am a pilot, so I quickly switched over to evasive maneuver calcs instead of focusing on the brake issue- i.e., how in the heck do I avoid the cars traversing the intersection without a scratch- which thankfully I did. :)

Still scary stuff though! I admit, I do miss having control, and pumping the brakes by myself. Time for winter tires too- the stock Nexens are less than optimal, IMO.
My two previous Chevy 4X4 trucks had ABS and it saved me a couple of times. I found that standing on the brakes and ignoring the noise and pulsations got the job done. And Tempest, you do this before panic sets in.
 

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What the old "pumping the brakes" technique did was allow the wheels to rotate for a fraction, just so any steering input could then actually steer the car. It also prevented a "runaway skid", where the tire's rubber compound actually melts and acts as a lubricant, prolonging the sliding of a locked-up tire. This is *exactly* the function of ABS. ABS does NOT stop you any faster than a properly-executed "threshold brake" maneuver, as a matter or fact, it's very slightly longer...

BUT... (and it's a really BIG "but"):

1) Very VERY few people (even trained race drivers) can keep the tires on that fine edge between rotating and locking, on every surface, every time. Add in long trips with waning concentration, and give the "nod" to ABS, which can do *very nearly* the same thing.

2) With ABS "pumping the brakes" for you, your mind is freed for "evasive maneuver calcs" - meaning STEER TO AVOID! In a vehicle with ABS, the preferred, instructed technique is "mash brake and steer" in that situation. Do NOT forget the "...and steer" part!!!! That's pretty much the whole point of ABS!

3) There are VERY few situations where NOT having ABS will physically stop you faster, aside from a trained driver threshold braking on a known surface. The main one is loose, granular surfaces (not snow, but dirt/gravel), where a wheel which has stoppped rotating can "dig in" and form a berm ahead of itself. Another is "mixed surfaces", where early ABS systems cause all wheels (or both wheels on an axle) to "pump" the same, regardless of friction coefficient. 4-channel ABS systems (like the Soul's, I believe) don't have this shortcoming.

All for now...
 

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Same brake issue--experienced driver

I just joined this forum because my 74 year old mother, who is about as experienced in driving in snow as you can get having been driving for over 55 years, is having this same probem with her 2011 Soul in dry, hot weather and I wanted to see if others had been experiencing this.

There are two separate strings on this topic, so it is not "inexperienced driver error" as so many here seem happy to diagnose. I found the message from the pilot very enlightening and I find it disturbing that a 17 year old (or her mother) are not be taken seriously by a majority of the respondants. I wonder how her mother will feel if her daughter is hurt or killed? Will she think it was a lack of training? Why exactly should we need "training" to drive a new car? If it's a safety feature, it should not require re-training or work arounds or "breaking in" or "getting used to it".

In my mother's case, her local service manager has had the car and deemed it "sound" and now, after the third time, is not and has not returned her calls or voicemails to his office or cell. (He told her he would call her back after 3pm Thursday and still has not called back or returned her calls).

This happened coming down a hill into traffic out of busy mall onto a busy road and twice on country roads with 2 way stops/merges all on perfectly dry sunny days at about 85 degrees.

My mother is not as agile as the pilot though she did manage to accelerate into traffic and avoid the collisions each time. What is going on with these vehicles? What do I say to the dealership at this point to get them to take a widowed senior citizen seriously?
 

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Is your mother new to this Soul or has she had it a while?..... reason i ask (and i am not been rude now), is that (as toyota found out to their cost).... in most cases it wasnt a brake issue, it was the driver pressing the wrong pedal by mistake ie the accelerator or brake and accelerator at the same time, that caused the brakes to appear to fade or fail. My father did the same thing with my previous car - the pedals were offset to the right in his car and to the left in mine and he hit the accelerator instead of the brake several times. if your mother is new to the Soul and the pedals were different in her old car - may this be the cause of the intermitent problem?
 

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Good point, Tempest (I am that pilot, BTW). I got orthopedic supports and some huge, wide shoes to hold them, a couple of months ago (I never said I was a young pilot :)) and the first few times driving the Soul with them, I did just that- touched the accelerator pedal a time or two. Had to get used to flying with them too- the rudder pedals are narrower than the shoes.

Ah, age, a wonderful thing....

That being said, there has been 1-2 times where I felt my braking very less than optimal on nice sunny days, not enough to be a safety issue, but just enough to ask 'why?'. So, who knows....
 

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ABS will stop the vehicle better in snow / ice / rain and on dry, level, smooth pavement. However, it will not work as well on a really rough road or when you are braking hard going over a railroad crossing, etc... The bouncing of the vehicle and the related reduction of braking traction will trigger the ABS, making it seem like the vehicle is not going to stop.
 

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did anything ever come out of this? reason i ask is b/c we have a 2105 soul EV and the same thing happened to my wife. she was rolling into a parking spot and the brakes wouldn't work. the car basically rolled up into a storefront. there is no way she was pressing the accelerator instead of the brake b/c this is an electric vehicle. if she had, the impact would have been much worse. Kia claims that the accident's impact was so light that it did not trigger the EDR/black box to record any data which basically corroborates our claim that the car just rolled until it was stopped by a convenience store.
our problem now is that after kia and our insurance's investigations, they did not find anything wrong w/ the brakes mechanically so this will be deemed our fault.
this is beyond frustrating as we are now forced to take back a car whose brakes had failed at a slow speed simply b/c the problem could not be reproduced. my wife obviously does not want the car back but i don't know what recourse we have. would we have been faced w/ the same situation if somebody had gotten hurt? it seems pretty ridiculous to believe that someone would intentionally roll into a store w/ their 3 yr old and their mother in the car but that's essentially the position insurance and kia are maintaining.
 

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Hi carver, sorry to hear about her accident. I don't know much about the EV except for reviews I've read & watched. Question: I was wondering if when you let up on the accelerator pedal if regenerative braking kicks in?

I thought I had read somewhere that you almost don't need to hit the brakes if you are coming up to a stop sign provided you take your foot off the accelerator soon enough.

My thought about that process is it would be easy to "trick" our human senses because braking is occurring but we are not actually pressing on the brake pedal (and have not moved our foot off the accelerator). Then when we want MORE braking action, we naturally put our foot down in the same place we believe is giving us braking, but in fact, it is the accelerator.

I'm not in any way saying I know what happened, but some food for thought.
 

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carver, what was the road surface like?

As per earlier posts regarding the OP, OP's daughter clearly engaged the ABS. Stopping ability is ultimately a function of tire traction. ABS is limited in that regard.

People hitting the gas when they thought they hit the brake is not uncommon, unfortunately.
 

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Here in the retirement center of the US, cars driving into the front of stores is almost a daily occurrence.
The problem is sitting behind the steering wheel, not the brakes!
Brakes don't work well, when the driver is pushing on the gas pedal.
Yes, AGE does enter into the equation.

:cool:
 

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did anything ever come out of this? reason i ask is b/c we have a 2105 soul EV and the same thing happened to my wife. she was rolling into a parking spot and the brakes wouldn't work. the car basically rolled up into a storefront. there is no way she was pressing the accelerator instead of the brake b/c this is an electric vehicle. if she had, the impact would have been much worse. Kia claims that the accident's impact was so light that it did not trigger the EDR/black box to record any data which basically corroborates our claim that the car just rolled until it was stopped by a convenience store.
our problem now is that after kia and our insurance's investigations, they did not find anything wrong w/ the brakes mechanically so this will be deemed our fault.
this is beyond frustrating as we are now forced to take back a car whose brakes had failed at a slow speed simply b/c the problem could not be reproduced. my wife obviously does not want the car back but i don't know what recourse we have. would we have been faced w/ the same situation if somebody had gotten hurt? it seems pretty ridiculous to believe that someone would intentionally roll into a store w/ their 3 yr old and their mother in the car but that's essentially the position insurance and kia are maintaining.
It should be an easy thing to check yourself, either in your drive (if you have enough room) or in a vacant lot with lots of room from items and vehicles. Then repeat the same situation a dozen time or as many times as you want so you feel confident with it, if there is a problem it should show up. When they tested it, do you know how many times it was checked or was it just based on checking the system. It's hard for them to do anything if they can't find a fault. How much damage was done.

there is no way she was pressing the accelerator instead of the brake b/c this is an electric vehicle
- sorry but I don't understand what this would have to do with a electric vehicle specifically.
 
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