Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Auto Recalls…

Posted on by Defensive Driving | in Defensive Driving Tips

Nobody is perfect. Not even car manufacturers. Sometimes they make mistakes, and just like any honest person would do, they admit to these mistakes in the form of a recall. Some recalls are voluntary, and others are forced by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) if too many complaints are received. However they come about, all recalls have something in common: the safety of the drivers is at risk.

How do I know if my car is recalled?

Luckily, you can’t register a car without giving your name and address. This makes it easy for car manufacturers to contact you should the need arise. However, that does not necessarily mean you will get the notification. Recalls are usually sent out via snail mail to the last known address the company has on file. If you skim your mail for junk, or your moved since you purchased your car, there is a good chance you might not get the notice. Luckily, the NHTSA has a search feature where you can always look up your exact model of car to check for any current recalls.

Oh no, my car has a recall! Now what?

The good news is that most recalls, while serious, don’t put your life in immediate danger. However, you should get them taken care of as quickly as possible. For most recalls, you simply take your car into the dealer and the problem is fixed free of charge. Rarely, the recall will require a replacement or refund of your car.

There’s not really that many recalls, are there?

Think again. Just this month alone, the NHTSA reports that there have been 30 recalls, with more being added every day. On June 3, CNN reported that Ford is recalling 465,000 vehicles due to a fuel leak that could potentially cause a fire. And surely you remember the huge Toyota floor mat (the mats got in the way of the accelerator pedal) recall that spanned from 2007-2010, affecting a total of 6.67 million cars, making it the fourth biggest car recall in history, according toMSN. While all recalls affect your safety, not all of them are life or death. The biggest thing for you to remember is that even though a recall shouldn’t cause you to panic, it is also something you don’t want to ignore.

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