Chrysler recalling thousands of vans over impact sensors

 

Auburn Hills, Michigan – Dec. 12, 2017 – Chrysler recently issued a recall order for more than 3,500 of its 2018 Ram ProMaster cargo vans, citing an issue with the vehicles’ front door impact pressure sensors, according to a letter submitted to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration.

The affected ProMaster vans have a new pressure sensor, but use the same fastening rivets as the vehicles with the older sensors, potentially leading to the driver’s side door airbags to unexpectedly deploy in certain situations. These vehicles were produced from late July to late August of 2017. Only about 13 percent of the 2018 ProMasters are estimated to have this defect.

The Defect

The existing fastening rivets in question were incorrectly fastened to the new sensors, which are designed to expand within a plastic attachment. Due to the incorrect installation, those sensor housings could fracture and potentially affect either sensor retention overall or the gasket seal-to-door area. If that happens, it could trigger the deployment of the driver’s door airbags in some crashes. That, in turn, could lead to additional injury risk for drivers.

Timeline of Events

While production with the existing fastening rivets began July 24, the investigation into the potential flaw did not begin until Aug. 18, initiated by Chrysler’s Manufacturing Quality organization. Two days later, the investigation determined that there was nothing materially wrong with either the rivets or sensors, so further information was sought. On Aug. 22, the rivet issue was discovered, prompting an effort to replace more than 1,300 affected vehicles built from Aug. 18 to 23 that were held back during the investigation.

Then, on Sept. 20, the full investigation was completed, and found that because of how random the causes behind any potential fractures were, it was advisable to recall all 2018 ProMasters built before Aug. 23. Through early November, Chrysler was unaware of any accidents or injuries that may have stemmed from this defect.

The Solution

Chrysler’s voluntary recall of the affected vehicles will replace both the front door impact pressure sensors, and fasten them with the proper rivets. The company will also ask in the letters it mails to affected owners that they include the receipts or other proof of payment for these repairs, so that it can reimburse customers for whatever expenses they incur.

Both owners and dealers will be notified on or about Jan. 3, 2018.

adminChrysler recalling thousands of vans over impact sensors

Chrysler recalls vehicles with defective occupant restraint features

 

Auburn Hills, Mich. – Nov. 3, 2017 – Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has recalled more than 414,000 vehicles potentially equipped with defective occupant restraint controllers, according to documentation filed with the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration. The campaign affects models across multiple brands, including:

  • 2012 Jeep Liberty sport utility vehicles manufactured between June 17, 2011 and Aug. 16, 2012.
  • 2012-2013 Chrysler 200 midsize sedans produced between June 25, 2011 and Jan. 15, 2012.
  • 2012-2013 Dodge Avenger midsize sedans produced between June 25, 2011 and Jan. 15, 2012.

FCA speculates that approximately 5 percent of the vehicles named in the recall contain defective parts.

The Defect

The models referenced in the action may come equipped with damaged ORC assemblies that are prone to jumper resistor failure, a condition that materializes following prolonged electrical overstress. ORC shutdown may cause the active headrests in affected vehicles to malfunction. This poses a serious risk to occupants involved in collisions, as the lack of AHR support may increase the likelihood of cranial concussion. That said, FCA has yet to receive field reports connecting the defective ORC assemblies to any accidents or injuries.

The air bag warning light normally illuminates in vehicles with defective ORC assemblies.

Timeline of Events

On July 2, 2013, FCA launched a voluntary safety recall for 2012 Jeep Liberties, 2012-2013 Chrysler 200s and 2012-2013 Dodge Avengers, after discovering that these vehicles contained integrated power modules that were causing ORC failure and inhibiting AHR operation, according to a chronology document. Dealers reprogrammed the TIPM units in these models to address both issues. Almost four years later on May 16, 2017, the NHTSA contacted FCA and notified the company of several driver complaints referencing the three models included in the 2013 recall. These reports described instances in which the air bag warning light turned on with no clear explanation, apparently indicating some safety feature malfunction. On May 19, the FCA Vehicle Safety and Regulatory Compliance group launched an investigation into the reports. One day later, the auto conglomerate ordered parts from the field for analysis. The NHTSA opened a concurrent inquiry June 1.

Throughout June and August, FCA received 13 ORC assemblies from the vehicles mentioned in the initial NHTSA reports. In July, the car company determined that at least two parts showed signs of jumper resistor failure due to electrical overstress. On Aug. 11, FCA engineers pinpointed a third part that ceased working following overstress and on Oct. 2, they encountered a fourth problematic component. Two days later, the FCA Vehicle Regulations Committee determined that a voluntary safety recall was necessary.

As of Sept. 29, FCA has received 122 vehicle owner questionnaires, 367 customer assistance inquiry requests and 2,453 warranty claims related to defective ORC equipment.

The Solution

FCA intends to direct dealers to replace the ORC assemblies in affected vehicles free of charge, according to a recall acknowledgment document submitted to the NHTSA. The vehicle manufacturer will notify both dealers and owners on or about Nov. 29. The latter should expect to receive word from FCA via first-class mail. Owners in need of more immediate assistance can contact FCA customer service at (800) 853-1403. Callers should use the internal recall identification code T56. Owners can also reach out the NHTSA directly using its vehicle safety hotline at (888) 327-4236.

adminChrysler recalls vehicles with defective occupant restraint features

Chrysler recalls vehicles with defective break booster shields

Auburn Hills, Mich. – Oct. 5, 2017 – Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has recalled more than 646,000 vehicles potentially equipped with improperly installed brake booster shields, according to documentation filed with the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration. The campaign affects 2011-2014 Dodge Durango and Jeep Grand Cherokee sport utility vehicles with production dates ranging from Jan. 5, 2010 to Sept. 8, 2013. FCA estimates that roughly 41 percent of the models referenced in the recall actually contain the defective parts.

The Defect

Affected vehicles may include incorrectly installed brake booster shields that do not effectively divert water away from the critical drivetrain features they are intended to protect. This increases the likelihood of brake booster corrosion and could lead to freezing in particularly cold environments. Both of these phenomena are capable of reducing vehicle stopping power, which poses a serious risk to occupants. FCA has not received reports connecting the defective fixtures to any injuries. However, the automaker has received one report correlating the defect to an accident.

Drivers encountering braking issues stemming from ineffective brake booster shields will see their dash warning lights illuminate and experience abnormal resistance when compressing the brake pedal. In some cases, the anti-lock brake system may activate.

Timeline of Events

On Jan. 18, 2017, the FCA Vehicle Safety and Regulatory Compliance group launched an internal investigation into field reports detailing customer complaints surrounding brake booster shield assemblies installed as part of an earlier recall, according to NHTSA documents. In February, engineers began evaluating approximately 20 brake boosters returned for further inspection. Between Feb. 23 and March 14, the third-party parts supplier responsible for fabricating the fixtures performed its own tests. On March 14, the NHTSA’s Vehicle Research and Test Center performed an independent evaluation and found that the returned brake boosters passed vacuum tests but failed to do so when brake assist was activated. The agency sent the results of this trial to FCA approximately seven days later.

FCA collaborated with the NHTSA and its supplier to conduct numerous other brake booster tests throughout April, May, June and early July. On July 6, NHTSA officials performed a road test with a vehicle equipped with returned brake boosters. The testers also adjusted brake leak rates to simulate different levels of corrosion. The vehicle used in the trial exceeded Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard requirements. However, during a post-run physical evaluation, the NHTSA officials noticed that brake booster water shields had been installed incorrectly. Five days later, the agency contacted FCA and requested that it examine all of the returned parts to determine the frequency of these incorrectly installed features. The NHTSA also asked the car company to conduct an accompanying field investigation.

On July 18, FCA reported that 12 of the remaining returned brake boosters in its possession included incorrectly installed water shields. It also found that of the 117 vehicles used in its field study, 41 percent had these parts. On July 27, FCA conducted an additional test which involved incorrectly installing brake booster water shields on a production vehicle, spraying it with water and letting it sit in an enclosed chamber with a temperature of -20 degrees Fahrenheit for 24 hours. During a post-spray drive, the vehicle displayed reduced pedal functionality, requiring 22 to 24 pounds-per-square-foot of power to depress. This reading was well outside of the FMVSS-approved range of 4-16 psf.

FCA reported the results of the cold-chamber test to the FCA Aug. 8 and three days later assembled an internal committee to discuss further evaluations. The automaker performed another cold-chamber trial Aug. 23 and saw results similar to those collected during the first test. It conducted another evaluation three days later and again saw similarly problematic results. The pedals in the vehicle used in the trial required 22 to 28 psf of compression power. FCA reviewed these and other test results over the course of late August and early September.

On Sept. 11, the FCA Vehicle Regulations Committee determined that the defect posed a serious safety hazard to owners and issued a voluntary safety recall.

The Solution

FCA will direct dealers to re-install the brake booster water shields in affected vehicles free of charge, according to a recall acknowledgement document. The car company plans to notify dealers and owners Nov. 7. Owners in need of more immediate assistance can reach out the Chrysler customer service personnel at (800) 853-1403. Callers should use the internal recall identification code T59. Owners can also contact the NHTSA via the agency’s 24-hour Vehicle Safety Hotline at (888) 327-4236.

Recall MastersChrysler recalls vehicles with defective break booster shields

Chrysler recalls SUVs with defective driveshafts

Recall Masters – September 22, 2017

Chrysler recalls SUVs with defective driveshafts

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has recalled multiple vehicles likely equipped with defective driveshafts, according to documentation filed with the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration. The campaign affects 2017 Dodge Durango sport utility vehicles with production dates ranging from May 25, 2017 to June 2, 2017. FCA suspects all of the vehicles referenced in the recall contain the defective parts.
The Defect
Affected models contain overly shortened halfshafts that could disengage from differentials during operation. Should this occur, vehicles will unexpectedly lose motive power and the ability to shift gears. This increases the likelihood of high-speed collisions and therefore poses a serious risk to occupants. That said, FCA has not received reports linking the defective drivetrain features to any accidents or injuries. Drivers may hear noise coming from the underside of the vehicle prior to halfshaft disconnect…

Read the entire article on the Recall Masters website

Sean ReyesChrysler recalls SUVs with defective driveshafts

Chrysler recalls vehicles with defective water pumps

 

Auburn Hills, Mich. – Sept. 20, 2017 – Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has recalled more than 443,000 vehicles likely equipped with defective water pump bearings, according to a company press release. The campaign affects 2013-2017 Ram 2500 and 3500 medium-duty pickup trucks, as well as 3500, 4500 and 5500 heavy-duty pickup trucks.

The Defect

The vehicles referenced in the recall possibly contain water pumps with bearings that could overheat and catch fire under certain conditions. These fixtures increase the likelihood of engine fires and therefore pose a serious to occupants. However, FCA has not received reports connecting the defective water pump bearings to any accidents or injuries. Warning lights in affected vehicles may illuminate when water pump functionality has been compromised.

Timeline of Events

The automaker launched an investigation after receiving a customer complaint mentioning the defect. FCA engineers determined the root cause, finding that the issue existed only in Ram pickups with 6.7-liter engines.

The Solution

FCA has yet to release a timetable for owner notification or information on a workable remedy. Owners in need of immediate assistance can contact the FCA USA Recall Information Center at (800) 853-1403 or reach out to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration via the agency’s Vehicle Safety Hotline at (888) 327-4236.

Sean ReyesChrysler recalls vehicles with defective water pumps

Chrysler recalls sports cars with defective oil cooler lines

 

Auburn Hills, Mich. – Aug. 24, 2017 – Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has recalled more than 1,200 sports cars with defective oil cooler lines, according to documentation filed with the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration. The campaign affects 2017 Dodge Charger and Challenger sports cars equipped with eight-cylinder Hellcat performance engines. FCA suspects 10 percent of the total number of vehicles referenced in the recall contain the defective parts.

The Defect

The models involved in this recall are equipped with engines whose engine oil cooler lines are not properly joined. Specifically, on the section of the EOC lines where chlorinated polyethylene hose meets aluminum tubing, the joints are not suitably crimped. This can lead to line separation and engine oil spillage, resulting in engine seizure and the risk of fire. Additionally, drivers may lose visibility due to oil spray covering the windshield. All of these outcomes pose serious safety hazards to drivers and increase the risk of an accident. However, FCA has not received any reports connecting the defect to any accidents or injuries thus far.

Timeline of Events

On May 13, 2017, engineers at the FCA assembly plant in Ontario, Canada, initiated a product recall after receiving three warranty claims mentioning EOC line separation, according to a chronology document submitted to the NHTSA. The FCA Vehicle Safety and Regulatory Compliance division immediately launched an investigation to better understand the consequences of the issue. On May 15, the parts supplier, Hutchings Automotive Products, performed production tests to determine if increasing the adhesive temperature during assembly would improve the structural integrity of the EOC line connections. These trials failed. Fifteen days later, FCA tested EOC line joints from aftermarket Mopar stock. These fixtures showed no signs of failure.

Over the week of June 12, FCA conducted more in-house tests to pinpoint the root cause of the EOC line separation. More than two weeks later, dealers in the U.S. market inspected approximately 50 vehicles to determine if they were equipped with the defective parts and needed repair.

On July 12, Hutchinson sent FCA results from an internal evaluation of the EOC hose material. The parts provider concluded that the material used to make the defective lines was out of specification. Two days later, FCA US Master Black Belt performed a parallel materials test and determined with 95 percent certainty that Hutchinson engineers were correct in their examination of the hose material.

With this information in hand, the FCA Vehicle Regulations Committee called for an official voluntary safety recall Aug. 1. As of that date, the car manufacturer had received a total of eight customer assistance and information requests, zero vehicle owner’s questionnaires and zero field reports related to the defective EOC line.

The Solution

FCA will direct dealers to replace the EOC lines in affected vehicles free of charge, according to a recall acknowledgment document sent to the NHTSA. The automaker plans to notify both owners and dealers on or around Sept. 22. However, owners in need of more immediate assistance can contact Chrysler customer service personnel at (800) 853-1403 or call the NHTSA Vehicle Safety Hotline at (888) 327-4236.

Sean ReyesChrysler recalls sports cars with defective oil cooler lines

Chrysler recalls vehicles with damaged alternator diodes

 

Auburn Hills, Mich. – July 14, 2017 – Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has recalled an estimated 442,214 vehicles potentially equipped with damaged alternator diodes, according to a company press release. The campaign affects a variety of models across multiple brands, including:

  • 2011-2014 Chrysler 300 sedans
  • 2011-2014 Two-door Dodge Challenger sports cars
  • 2011-2014 Four-door Dodge Charger sports cars
  • 2011-2014 Dodge Durango sport utility vehicles
  • 2012-2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee sport utility vehicles

Approximately 318, 781 of the vehicles originated from U.S. dealers, while 37,504 are circulating the Canadian and Mexican markets. The remaining 85, 292 are outside of the North American Free Trade Agreement zone. FCA estimates 100 percent of the vehicles named in the recall contain the defective part, according to documentation filed with the National Highway Transportation Administration.

The Defect

Vehicles named in the recall are suspected to contain alternators with diodes susceptible to thermal fatigue failure stemming from overstressed electric hydraulic power steering systems. In the event of a diode failure, the alternator ceases supplying the engine with electricity, leading to the unexpected loss of multiple features, including the antilock braking system, the electronic stability control system and the engine control module. In some cases, the vehicle my cease operation entirely. The diodes can also short circuit and cause fire, heat and smoke to rise from the engine.

FCA has received reports of two accidents related to the faulty diodes. However, the car company has yet to receive notification of any injuries connected to the defect.

Timeline of Events

FCA has not released details into the internal investigation that uncovered the problem. The company is expected to notify dealers on or around Aug. 24.

The Solution

FCA will direct dealers to replace the alternators in affected vehicles, free of charge, according to a recall acknowledgement document filed with the NHTSA. Owners should expect to receive notification via first-class mail on or around Aug. 24. However, those in need of more immediate assistance can contact the FCA U.S. Customer Care Center at (800) 853-1403 or the NHTSA Vehicle Safety Hotline at (888) 327-4236.

adminChrysler recalls vehicles with damaged alternator diodes

Chrysler recalls vehicles with faulty wiring

 

Auburn Hill, Mich. – July 14, 2017 – Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has recalled approximately 363,480 vehicles thought to contain defective air bag wiring fixtures, according to a press release from FCA. The campaign affects 2011-2015 Dodge Journey crossover models produced between Oct. 14, 2010 and April 20, 2015, as well as 2011-2015 Fiat Freemont crossovers sold outside of the North American Free Trade Agreement zone. FCA estimates that 1 percent of the vehicles named in the recall contain the faulty wiring fixtures, according to documentation filed with the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration.

The Defect

The affected vehicles could come equipped with air bag wiring fixtures that chafe against steering wheel components. In this scenario, short-circuiting is likely. This may lead to unexpected driver-side air bag deployment. FCA has received reports of six injuries connected to the defect. In these cases, the air bag warning light illuminated prior to deployment. Drivers also observed unintended windshield wiper operation.

The car company has yet to receive reports of any accidents related to the defective wiring fixture.

Timeline of Events

In October 2014, FCA investigated an instance of inadvertent air bag deployment involving a Dodge Caravan minivan, according to a chronology document filed with the NHTSA. Engineers reporting to the auto maker’s Vehicle Safety and Regulatory Compliance group analyzed the issue and suggested the steering column clockspring conductor tape was to blame.

FCA continued the investigation and in March 2015 determined the actual root cause of the IAD: shorted wires due to friction between the air bag wiring harness and the metal horn plate located within the steering wheel assembly. In May, FCA engineers successfully tested tape-based wiring harness protection, which was then implemented in production facilities in September. This improvement applied to both Caravan and Journey models.

The car company continued to monitor the issue throughout 2015, while also identifying and quarantining damaged steering wheel assemblies.

In January 2016, FCA confirmed all of the updated wiring protections for Caravan and Journey vehicles were successfully installed in September 2015. One month later, the company requested a series of vehicle inspections to assess the efficacy of these production improvements.

In March, engineers conducted 26 corporate vehicle inspections and discovered that three models showed signs of contact between air bag wiring fixtures and steering wheel components. The FCA Quality Engineering Center obtained the inspection results the following month. After an initial review, QEC sent the results to the engineering laboratory, which conducted vehicle vibration tests and found that steering wheel components penetrated the air bag wiring protection. FCA continued to investigate and monitor the issue throughout 2016.

In January 2017, the VSRC received reports of IADs linked to other causes not addressed in previous investigations. One month later, FCA engineers opened a new inquiry and reviewed parts from the vehicles named in these reports and discovered a separate production anomaly limited in scope.

FCA closed this new investigation in early February but continued to monitor the issue. Over the course of late February, March and April the auto maker received new IAD reports involving shorted air bag wiring fixtures. It re-opened the brief investigation initiated in January. FCA received additional IAD reports in May.

On June 6, the Vehicle Regulations Committee conducted voluntary recall for Caravan models and requested more information on the Journey crossover. On June 20, engineers determine that shortened clockspring assemblies were the root cause in IAD instances involving Journeys.The VRC extended the campaign on June 30 to apply to Journey models.

The Solution

FCA has directed dealers to inspect the air bag wiring on affected vehicles and replace and reinforce these fixtures, free of charge. Owners are expected to receive notification via first-class mail between Aug. 7 and Aug. 21. Those in need of more immediate help can contact FCA customer service at (800) 853-1403 or call the NHTSA Vehicle Safety Hotline at (888) 327-4236.

adminChrysler recalls vehicles with faulty wiring

Chrysler Recalls 300 and Charge Models Over Loose Bolts

Auburn Hills, Mich. – Feb. 16, 2017 – Chrysler has recalled more than 69,000 vehicles due to loose driveshaft bolts. The recall affects Chrysler 300 and Dodge Charger all-wheel-drive sedans produced between 2014 and 2017, according to documentation from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

The Defect

The affected all-wheel-drive models feature abnormally loose driveshaft bolts. These fixtures can slacken to such an extent that the driveshaft disconnects completely and the vehicle loses power. This poses a serious hazard to drivers and can result in injury. There have been no reports of related injuries, according to the car manufacturer.

Timeline of Events

  • In January 2016, police departments across the country reported loose driveshaft bolts in interceptor versions of the Dodge Charger. Chrysler investigated the claim, and one month later evaluated fabrication procedures at its assembly plant in Brampton, Ontario.
  • On March 2, 2016, Chrysler launched an additional investigation into consumer models with the same driveshaft assembly. This included all-wheel-drive Dodge Charger and Chrysler 300 models produced between 2014 and 2017.
  • On June 30, 2016, the automaker advised engineers at the Brampton plant to increase the torque on driveshaft bolts to achieve optimal clamp load. Field reports following this change showed no signs of looseness.
  • Between June 2016 and February 2017, Chrysler collected and analyzed vehicle and warranty data to determine the scope of the problem.
  • On Feb. 3, 2017, Chrysler closed its review, identifying 69,298 potentially affected models.
  • On Feb. 7, 2017, the vehicle manufacturer initiated a voluntary recall.

The Solution

Chrysler has directed dealers to replace the driveshaft bolts in affected models free of charge. The recall is scheduled to begin March 31, 2017. Owners should expect to receive notice soon.

 

adminChrysler Recalls 300 and Charge Models Over Loose Bolts