Takata Airbags A Problem For Chevrolet

General Motors has announced a recall of Chevrolet Malibu vehicles from the 2016 model year. These cars are suffering a defect in their Takata-manufactured airbags – marking yet another problem for the embattled company.

The Defect

General Motors will recall 2016 Chevrolet Malibu models manufactured between Nov. 18, 2015 and June 7, 2016, according to documents compiled by the National Highway Traffic Safety Association. The cars have defective modules in their seat-mounted side-impact airbags that may cause the fabric of the airbag cushions to tear during deployment. This increases the risk that the airbags will not perform as designed, threatening the safety of the vehicles’ occupants.

Timeline

  • June 13, 2016 – Airbag supplier Takata discovered the fabric tear during a routine Lot Acceptance Test. Takata informed General Motors and then quarantined the entire shipment of supplies to confirm that the module was the cause of the problem. Specifically, the inflator may have been loaded with more propellant than necessary.
  • June 24, 2016 – General Motors opened an investigation into the issue after a report was filed on its Speak Up for Safety System.
  • July 13, 2016 – General Motors assigned a product investigator to look closely into the module issue.
  • Aug. 11, 2016 – General Motors learned that other inflators not included in the original quarantine may have similar problems, requiring further testing. The company’s Open Investigation Review then sought more data regarding the inflators.
  • Aug. 26, 2016 – Takata told General Motors that it found 18 modules with inflators that were heavier than they were supposed to be – meaning they could contain too much propellant.
  • Oct. 19, 2016 – General Motors decided to conduct the safety recall.

Resolution

Chevrolet dealers will inspect side airbags and replace them at no charge if faulty inflators are detected. Buyers are encouraged to contact their dealer as soon as possible.

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Isuzu Faces Accelerator Problems

Isuzu Technical Center has recently announced the recall of NPR and NPR HD vehicles, as well as the Chevrolet Low Cab Forward 3500 and 4500, due to faulty throttle pedals. These components have flaws that could prevent vehicles from decelerating as expected.

The Defect

Isuzu will recall vehicles from the 2014-2016 model years. The throttle pedals on these cars may get stuck under steel stopper bolts, causing the pedal to remain in the full-throttle position, according to documents compiled by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. This makes it difficult for drivers to safely stop their vehicles and maintain control while on the road.

Timeline

  • July 2016 – Isuzu learned about a driver of a Model Year 2015 N-Series Gas vehicle who struggled to slow down when letting off the gas. The driver had to hit the brake in order to lose speed.
  • August 2016 – Isuzu received a warranty claim for another vehicle of the same model. Further investigation uncovered that some accelerator pedals may be susceptible to additional lateral force. In addition, the company reopened several prior investigations to see if there was a larger trend that had been missed. One pedal assembly was missing a fastener, while another had an excessively deformed bracket.
  • October 2016 – Isuzu issued the recall for all model years where similar issues have been reported.

Resolution

Isuzu will remove stopper bolts and replace them with flanged plates that will be bolted to the floor. This will prevent lateral movement and lessen straining on the components. This will be done free of charge, and any customer who has already paid for a replacement will be reimbursed.

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What the Chevrolet Cruze Recalls Mean

Warren, Mich. — September 6, 2016 — A Part 573 Safety Recall report submitted June 29 concerned approximately 32,913 Chevrolet Cruze vehicles. In these autos, the source said, headlamp lenses do not come bearing the proper aiming identifier code. The report said that this represents noncompliance with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 108, which could apply even though the units were properly aligned during production.

The larger cause of the issue was described as a headlamp supplier etching equipment programming error. Because of this issue, the lenses did not contain the right codes, potentially making it hard for services to adjust the headlamps properly.

This report came just over a month after the first notice of the issue, on May 25. General Motors’ official investigation opened June 2, with the voluntary recall action launching June 22. To address the problem, the manufacturer said it would mail both owners and dealers the necessary labels.

These labels contain four categories of information about the recalled component: the necessary name, description, part number and country of origin. The codes should appear on the headlamps in vehicles made after May 26, 2016.

Other Chevrolet recalls have included the Cruze model. A more recent one concerned a different FMVSS, number 114. This action included not just 2016 Cruzes but also other Chevrolet models, such as the Malibu and Equinox.

All of these cars could have a defect making it possible to roll away if the ignition key is removed while the transmission is in park. The component supplier involved in this case is Alps Electronics, another outfit based out of Warren, Michigan. New housings were used to remedy the problem. This safety recall officially began after June 23, 2016, on the decision of the Safety Field Action Decision Authority.

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GM Recalls Chevrolet Impalas Over Faulty Sensors

Warren, Mich. — July 29, 2016 — One of the latest General Motors recalls concerns approximately 289,254 2009 and 2010 Chevrolet Impala vehicles. These units might put occupants in danger because the passenger presence sensor wire might deteriorate and accidentally deactivate the passenger air bags when they’re needed.

According to the official Part 573 report for this recall, the PPS module wiring could get damaged if the front passenger seat frame rubs against it. While this might not happen in all vehicles – and only 1 percent of the recalled population are believed to have the defect – the problem is still considered potentially serious. Affected vehicles were produced between April 25, 2008 and February 16, 2010.

The damage has to be severe to prevent the air bags from functioning properly. If owners notice the air bag telltale light, the air bag status indicator or the service air bag message switched on, then this could indicate a possible problem. The same sensor issue might also affect alerts within the vehicle. The first employee indication of this issue dates back to a March 8 report through the company’s Speak Up for Safety program.

To update impacted cars and correct this problem, affected wires will be updated with anti-abrasion tape. This should help strengthen the wires and keep them from wearing down as easily. Though the report was submitted June 29, the same date planned for dealer notification, the accompanying recall acknowledgement wasn’t dated until July 20. No owner notification date was included.

In a Global Safety Field Instructions note also released June 29, the manufacturer announced that the GWM Investigate Vehicle History screen would be scheduled for a July 1 update. The statement also lists the passenger presence sensor and instrument cluster malfunction as the prompt for the recall.

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Some Chevrolet Malibu Vehicles Could Suffer Brake Module Failures

Warren, Mich. — June 28, 2016 — Among the most recent GM recalls is an action centered around brake module issues in Chevrolet vehicles. The manufacturer is recalling 66 Malibu cars from the 2016 model year, in an attempt to correct possible Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard compliance problems. The electronic brake modules could suffer a potential failure that would affect multiple aspects of the car’s standard braking functions.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said that memory chips in these modules would impact both the anti-lock brake and electronic stability control systems. Although the driver will still be able to operate the brakes, the loss of support systems could make normal driving more difficult.

According to the official Part 573 Safety Recall Report from the organization, owners can check the driver information center for a possible indicator of electronic brake control module failure. This system could display multiple warning lights and messages, including a “service brake system” message.

The faulty component was manufactured by ZF TRW. The first indications of this issue came March 8, after several vehicles showed a loss of electronic braking systems. The remedy requires dealers to replace the electronic brake control module with a new unit that has “accurate voltages written to memory,” as the report stated. In addition, this feature will be present in all Chevrolet Malibu vehicles built after March 12.

While the dealer notification date was listed as May 4, owners are not scheduled to be notified until June 10. In the meantime, GM is directing owners to official channels, including its own recall website and customer support service.

The 2016 Malibu has been a part of other GM recalls this year. This includes a March action that affected 3,137 vehicles, as described in an official NHTSA acknowledgment.

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GM Recalls Malibu Vehicles for Air Bag Stud Concerns

Warren, MI — April 11, 2016 — Approximately 3,137 vehicles are subject to a possible fault that would leave occupants in danger during a collision. According to an official report submitted on March 11, this new recall applies to 2016 Chevrolet Malibu autos, which may feature fracturing on the side air bag weld studs. This could destabilize the airbag and reduce its effectiveness. Though the cause of the defect is currently unknown, the Part 573 report for this issue stated that the weak weld bonding in affected vehicles may be responsible.

The first weld fractures connected to this recall were observed earlier this year, in February. The report clarified that the manufacturer announced the recall after its Safety and Field Action Decision Authority received studies on the studs’ torque and angle. Dealers are expected to fix this issue, when it exists, by replacing all of the affected side airbag modules.

“Vehicles built after March 5, 2016 are manufactured with side airbag modules produced after additional lot acceptance testing and process check criteria were implemented at the supplier,” the source stated. Without these repairs, the offending models could violate Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 214.

A Stop Delivery Notice, also distributed on March 11, warned dealers that the Global Warranty Management system won’t display the correct status or release date until the repair is ready. Dealers were also instructed to keep all potentially affected vehicles out of circulation, which included “new or used vehicle inventory, GM Certified Used, courtesy transportation vehicles, dealer shuttle vehicles” and others.

None of these vehicles were asked to be used for any purpose, which not only means sale to customers, but other purposes, such as demonstration and auction. The side airbags in need of replacement could be located in the rear, left, right and front.

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Power-steering in Police Vehicles Leads to GM Recalls

Warren, MI — April 04, 2016 — Though no accidents have yet been detected, General Motors will recall 6,280 Chevrolet Caprice Police Pursuit vehicles, with production dates ranging between 2013 and 2014. The official Part 573 Safety Recall Report, submitted to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration on March 16, noted that these vehicles could be subject to a power steering assist failure that could leave drivers struggling to properly steer.

This source stated that the components associated with this recall come from the Mando corporation, based in the Republic of Korea. This specific hazard comes as the result of normal police work, as systems within these vehicles are affected during use.

“Subject to the extended idling times and elevated temperatures experienced in typical police applications, these vehicles may experience loss of electric power steering (EPS) assistance while driving or idling as a result of fretting corrosion on the connector between the EPS module and the torque sensor,” the report asserted.

The repair instructions address both those vehicles already in the field and those en route: the latter will get epoxy to support the connector, while dealers replace the steering gear assemblies in the former. The newer gears will better resist corrosion.

The Associated Press mentioned the 20 hour periods that police cars often run in its coverage of this recall. Drivers in affected cars won’t lose control of steering completely, and the NHTSA Report noted that drivers will see a malfunction indicator light and hear a warning chime if the issue is present.

General Motors first detected this issue through complaints submitted as part of the Speak Up for Safety program in 2015. The vehicles were assembled in Holden, Australia, and impacted cars with model years between 2014 and 2016.

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GM fixes addresses previous fire risk recall with new one [Video]

More than 1 million GM vehicles could suffer leaks that lead to engine fires. The recall is significant because many of the vehicles included were already part of recalls from years ago. Recalled models include the Chevrolet Impala, Lumina and Monte Carlo, as well as the Pontiac Grand Prix, Oldsmobile Intrigue and Buick Regal. Model years range from 1997 to 2004.

Since the affected vehicles could catch fire, a rep for the manufacturer said owners may be ordered not to park indoors. Previous recall remedies may not have fixed the problem, causing valve leaks. Nearly 20 injuries have been traced to this issue since 2009, but no official remedy has been announced.

All told, the new recall will include 1.41 million vehicles around the world. More than 1,300 fires have been linked to this problem, including in vehicles that were previously repaired.

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GM issues recall for windshield wiper motor fire risk [Video]

In a press statement, General Motors recently announced a new recall for more than 30,000 of its SUVs across North America. Owners of these vehicles could, in extreme cases, be at risk of fire.

Although the manufacturer noted that the fire risk is only present in “some cases,” the windshield wiper motor could overheat to the point that it causes the motor cover to catch fire. The recall effort officially began on September 30, a day after the report receipt date.

Makes and models associated with this recall include the 2016 Chevrolet Traverse, Buick Enclave and GMC Arcadia, all produced within a range of a few weeks this year between August and September. To remedy the situation, GM states that dealers will replace the wiper motor cover assembly on the front of the affected vehicles.

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New ignition switch problem leads to GM recall [Video]

A new GM recall concerns ignition switch problems in some Chevrolet Silverado and Suburban vehicles, as well as GMC Sierras and Tahoe SUVs. Fortunately, the problem appears to have been detected early on, with only five accidental shutoffs attributed to it and just over 3,000 autos recalled. In affected vehicles, the cars can get stuck in the ignition when interior temperatures are high.

The lock cylinder in these cars could accidentally be shifted into “accessory” mode, making the truck less safe to drive and leaving it more defenseless during crashes. There have been no injuries reported yet connected to these issues, and is supposedly unrelated to a previous GM ignition switch recall.

The remedy for this issue involves changing out the housing around the ignition area.

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