Getting a letter from your manufacturer that your car has a recall is not the kind of mail that makes you excited. According to Automotive News, "The number of vehicles recalled in the U.S. in 2016 rose 4.5 percent to 53.1 million, from 50.8 million in 2015 --making 2016 the highest year on record.
Recalls are increasing as manufacturers are focusing on innovation and cost cuts. Major recalls include tires, defective, and faulty ignition switches.
What to do if your car is recalled:
- Take the letter seriously. Manufacturers are required to notify all affected dealers and vehicle owners of any safety recall. The notice will describe the recall, who to call and what cost may be involved for the repair - typically covered by the manufacturer.
- Call the manufacturer or dealership listed and schedule a vehicle check. If you have received a recall notice and the dealership refuses to handle the claim notify the manufacturer immediately. You can also file a complaint with NHTSA at www.safercar.gov.
If you've heard of a recall but have not been notified there is the chance you recently bought your car. Manufacturers compile a list along with the state registration office to find and notify the current owner of a recall. You can go to https://www.nhtsa.gov/recalls, enter your VIN number and see any details about your vehicle. It's a good idea to periodically check your VIN in the database to ensure your vehicle is operating safely. https://www.nhtsa.gov/recalls
Some choose to ignore the recall and avoid getting the issue resolved. This could lead to car defects and result in an accident. And, if you try to sell it, the unrepaired recall will show up in the vehicle's history.
Do yourself a favor and contact your dealer to schedule a fix. Check out https://www.nhtsa.gov/recalls
for additional recalls on car seats, tires, and equipment.