P1326 Glow Relay Stuck On: Quick Fixes and Tips for Your Vehicle

If you happen to be a Kia or Hyundai owner, you may be concerned with the P1326 glow relay stuck issue.

The P1326 code is related to the Knock Sensor Detection System (KSDS) and is triggered when the Engine Control Module identifies abnormal vibrations in the engine.

The glow relay, which helps heat the engine for combustion, can sometimes wear out or fail, leading to complications such as power loss, difficulties in starting the gas engine, and even stalling.

By understanding the possible causes and symptoms of P1326, vehicle owners can take the necessary steps to diagnose the issue.  Addressing the problem on time ensures better vehicle performance and longevity.

This article aims to provide insights into what the P1326 code means, the possible causes and symptoms, and how to resolve this issue accurately.

P1326 Glow Relay Stuck on - What to Do?


What is the P1326 Code?

The P1326 code is an OBD-II trouble code that identifies issues with a vehicle’s glow relay or knock sensor. This code can appear for different reasons, depending on the vehicle’s make and model.

For diesel-engine Kia vehicles, P1326 typically indicates issues with glow plug relays, which heat the engine cylinders during cold weather. When these relays malfunction, the engine may experience difficulties starting or worsened performance.

On the other hand, many Kia and Hyundai vehicles experience P1326 due to issues with the Knock Sensor Detection System (KSDS). This system monitors engine vibrations and prevents harmful knocking. A software error in the KSDS could lead to a P1326 code.

Addressing the P1326 code primarily involves detecting the exact cause. If the issue stems from a bad knock sensor or wiring, seek replacement or repair. For software errors in the KSDS, updating the system should resolve the problem. In cases involving faulty glow plug relays, replacing the relay is necessary.

Keep in mind that resolving P1326 code is crucial in ensuring vehicle safety and optimal performance.

Causes of P1326 Code

P1326 code involves the knock sensor system in vehicles, particularly Kia and Hyundai models. Here are the common causes leading to this code:

Bad knock sensor: The primary cause of P1326 is a faulty knock sensor that might not detect engine knocks. This leads to reduced performance and efficiency.

KSDS software error: In many Kia and Hyundai models, a software error in the Knock Sensor Detection System (KSDS) can also trigger a P1326 code. This needs a software update to resolve the issue.

Poor electrical connections

Loose or corroded connections result in intermittent communication between the knock sensor and the engine control unit, leading to inaccurate readings and the appearance of the P1326 code.

Regular maintenance and inspection of the sensor’s connections can prevent this issue.

P1326 Glow Relay Stuck on - What to Do?

Poor quality oil or gas

Low-quality fuel or oil can cause knocking or pinging in the engine, activating the knock sensor and resulting in the P1326 code.

Using high-quality fuel and adhering to recommended oil change intervals are vital to ensure optimal engine performance and avoid potential knock-related problems.

System running in limp mode

When the vehicle detects a severe issue, it may enter limp mode, limiting engine power to protect from further damage, often accompanied by the P1326 code.

You should avoid driving in limp mode whenever possible, as it can lead to reduced vehicle performance. Also address it  promptly to prevent additional damage.

Damaged wiring harness

A damaged wiring harness can cause various electrical issues, including incorrect knock sensor readings and the illumination of the P1326 code. The wiring harness serves as the nervous system of the vehicle, and any damage to it can have widespread effects on the engine’s overall performance

Worn-out rod bearings

Worn rod bearings can lead to excessive engine noise and vibrations, sometimes mistaken for knocking, causing the knock sensor to trigger the P1326 code. Timely replacement of worn-out rod bearings is critical to avoid catastrophic engine failure and to maintain a smooth and quiet engine operation.

Short circuit in the glow relay

A short circuit in the glow plug relay, prevalent in diesel-engine Kia models, can cause the P1326 code and lead to starting difficulties in cold conditions. The glow relay’s function is vital in providing additional heat for cold starts, and its malfunction can impact engine performance during cold weather.

Possible rod knock issue

A rod knock signifies a serious internal engine problem caused by a damaged connecting rod bearing, which can activate the knock sensor and prompt the appearance of the P1326 code. Ignoring a rod knock can lead to catastrophic engine failure, and the problem calls for immediate attention and repair.

To help you understand the differences between Kia and Hyundai in dealing with P1326 code, here’s a comparison table:

Common in Optima modelOccurs in various models
Update KSDS softwareUpdate KSDS software
Replace knock sensorReplace knock sensor
Check wiring and harnessCheck wiring and harness

Maintaining your vehicle by replacing air filters, using quality oil and gas, and checking wiring regularly can help prevent P1326 code issues.

Symptoms of the P1326 Code

Knowing the symptoms will help you identify when this problem arises.

  • Check Engine Light: The most common indicator of the P1326 code is the check engine light flashing.
  • Limp Mode: Your vehicle may enter limp mode, restricting its acceleration capabilities to prevent further damage.
  • Power Loss: You might experience a decrease in power, affecting your ability to accelerate smoothly.
  • Problem with starting engine: Difficulties in starting the gas engine and idle trouble can also be symptoms of P1326 code.
  • Stalling and misfire: Stalling and misfire issues might occur when you least expect it. This can be associated with a P1326 code.

By observing these signs, you can take prompt action in addressing the P1326 code and maintain your vehicle’s performance.

P1326 Glow Relay Stuck on - What to Do?


Diagnosing P1326 Code

The P1326 code, commonly associated with the knock sensor system in Kia and Hyundai vehicles, can be a cause of concern for car owners.

This code indicates potential problems in the engine, and it’s essential to diagnose and address them promptly to maintain vehicle performance and prevent further damage.

Here’s a step-by-step guide to diagnosing and resolving the P1326 code:

  1. Check for Other Codes: Before diving into the specific P1326 code, scan for other diagnostic trouble codes (DTCs). Often, multiple codes might be present, providing more comprehensive insights into potential issues with the vehicle.
  2. Inspect Wiring and Connections: Begin by visually inspecting the wiring and connections related to the knock sensor and the Knock Sensor Detection System (KSDS). Look for signs of damage, fraying, or corrosion. Faulty wiring can lead to false readings and trigger the P1326 code.
  3. Test the Knock Sensor: Conduct a functional test of the knock sensor. Using a scan tool, monitor the sensor’s output while tapping on the engine block gently. The sensor should respond to the vibrations. If there’s no change in the output signal, the knock sensor may be faulty and requires replacement.
  4. Check the Knock Sensor Circuit: Use a multimeter to measure the voltage in the knock sensor circuit. Compare the readings to the manufacturer’s specifications. Deviations from the standard voltage range can indicate problems with the circuit or poor electrical connections.
  5. Update KSDS Software: For certain Kia and Hyundai models, a software error in the Knock Sensor Detection System (KSDS) can trigger the P1326 code. Visit an authorized service center to update the KSDS software, which often resolves the issue.
  6. Inspect Glow Plug Relay (Diesel Models): If you own a diesel-engine Kia model, check the glow plug relay for any short circuits or malfunctions. A faulty relay can trigger the P1326 code and lead to cold-starting difficulties.
  7. Examine Engine for Other Issues: The P1326 code can sometimes be a symptom of underlying engine problems, such as worn-out rod bearings or issues related to the fuel system. Inspect the engine thoroughly to identify any additional issues that might contribute to the code.
  8. Clear the Code and Test Drive: After making any repairs or resolving identified issues, clear the P1326 code with a scan tool. Take the vehicle for a test drive to ensure that the code does not reappear and that the engine is performing optimally.

Remember, timely diagnosis and resolution of the P1326 code are essential to maintain your vehicle’s performance, fuel efficiency, and overall reliability.

Regular maintenance and addressing issues promptly can extend the lifespan of your Kia or Hyundai vehicle and provide a smoother driving experience.

P1326 Code Repair and Solutions

The P1326 code indicates a problem with the glow relay or knock sensor. To address this issue, follow these steps:

  1. Inspect the wiring: Check the wiring harness and ensure it is not damaged or shorted. A faulty connection to the knock sensor circuit could trigger the P1326 code.
  2. Check the knock sensor: Examine the knock sensor for damage or malfunction. A bad knock sensor is a common cause for the P1326 fault code.
  1. Consider engine recalls: In some cases, a P1326 fault code could result from a software error in the KSDS system. If the issue is with a Kia or Hyundai vehicle, check for any related recalls and bring your car to the dealership for an engine control module (ECM) update or engine replacement.
  2. Reset the code: Clear the P1326 fault code by using a diagnostic tool or disconnecting the battery for a few minutes. This allows the vehicle to reset its ECU, hopefully resolving the issue if the root cause has been fixed.
  3. Fuel additives: If the problem persists in a vehicle with substantial mileage, consider using a fuel additive in the gas tank when filling up. This may help clean the engine’s fuel system and improve ignition performance.

Remember to promptly address the P1326 code to avoid potential engine damage, particularly if your vehicle is a Kia or Hyundai model.

P1326 Glow Relay Stuck on - What to Do?



Diagnosing the P1326 code in Kia and Hyundai vehicles requires a systematic approach to identify and resolve potential issues with the knock sensor system.

Properly inspecting wiring, conducting functional tests, updating software, and addressing related engine problems are crucial steps in maintaining vehicle performance and avoiding costly damages.

By following this guide and seeking professional help when needed, car owners can ensure their vehicles operate smoothly and reliably for years to come.

Frequently Asked Questions

How to fix P1326 error code in Kia vehicles?

To fix the P1326 error code in a Kia vehicle:

  1. Use an OBD-II scanner to identify the issue.
  2. Inspect the knock sensor and its wiring.
  3. Update the KSDS system software if necessary.
  4. Restart the engine and see if the issue persists.

What does P1326 error code indicate in Hyundai Tucson?

For Hyundai Tucson, the P1326 error code indicates a problem with the knock sensor or its wiring, and can also be caused by a software error in the KSDS system. It’s necessary to check both the sensor and the system for possible issues.

What is the location of glow relay in Kia Optima?

The glow relay in the Kia Optima is typically located near the engine control module (ECM) and can be accessed by removing the engine compartment cover.

Is there a recall for P1326 issue in Kia Soul?

There is no specific recall for the P1326 issue in Kia Soul. However, it’s advisable to check for any applicable recalls or updates related to the knock sensor or KSDS system in your vehicle.

How does P1326 affect a 2017 Kia Sportage?

A P1326 error code in a 2017 Kia Sportage can result in reduced engine performance, decreased fuel efficiency, and potential engine damage if left unaddressed. It’s crucial to diagnose and resolve the issue as soon as possible.

Does Kia offer a warranty for P1326 issue?

Kia’s standard warranty may cover issues related to the P1326 error code, depending on the specific terms and conditions. It’s recommended to consult your vehicle’s warranty documentation or contact your local Kia dealership for assistance.

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Sean Mendez

Hi, I am Sean, a self-confessed petrolhead. I live in Boise, Idaho with a busy family of four and our energetic Labrador retriever. Thank you for visiting my website. You can find my email on the contact page.

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