Vehicles in GM Recalls May Not Warn Drivers When Key is in Ignition

Warren, Mich. — June 20, 2016 — An important alarm feature may not work properly in some Chevrolet vehicles, as a report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recently stated. General Motors is taking measures to address a security fault that could allow drivers to leave their keys in the ignition slots for several vehicles with model years ranging from 2013 to 2016.

Three Chevrolet models, (the Sonic, Spark and Trax vehicles) are part of this action, which extends to 317,572 units. The relatively subtle flaw may go undetected by motorists but could still fail Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 114, the report stated, leaving the vehicle vulnerable to theft.

The source said that the warning chime that should play when a driver leaves the key in the ignition may not do so, depending on how and when he or she opens the door. This only applies to vehicles with the Bring Your Own Media feature: In affected vehicles, the radio isn’t able to receive the command to exit sleep mode and prompt the proper alert.

Taking proper action
Though there is no official recall schedule yet, the report stated that dealers can update the included radio software to function correctly and execute the right key chime. The software in Sonic and Trax vehicles built after this April 13 and April 17, respectively, are already fixed, and the radio has been discontinued in Spark models altogether.

In addition, Autoblog’s article on this recall advised owners to take extra care to bring car keys when exiting a vehicle and not rely on the chime, in case it doesn’t work. The report lists two specific circumstances in which the chime could fail: if the driver takes more than 10 minutes to open the door after turning the vehicle off and leaving the key in the ignition, or the driver takes more than 20 seconds to open the door a second time after closing it.

The latter case could prove especially tricky, since the owner might hear a noise, but only a shortened version of the one he or she should. This is still possible evidence of the defect.

Calibration specifics
Since the official recall submission, the NHTSA has posted a pair of safety bulletins describing the necessary measures for reprogramming the systems. This notice specifically warned dealers not to program the affected control module without instruction or an updated programming tool. Other necessary precautions include reducing battery voltage fluctuations and putting the ignition switch in the correct position, as described by the Service Programming System.

Using a USB device and the vehicle’s own “infotainment display”, staff will update the necessary software and wait the required time for the changes to take effect. This same bulletin requires dealers to address all vehicles that arrive in their facility, ensuring completion for any models that might appear in dealer inventory.

FMVSS 114: A closer look
The text of this standard involves language that makes this recall a serious concern. As of 2016, FMVSS 114, which addresses “Theft protection and rollaway prevention,” requires a starting system to respond if the key is removed.

The subsections of this document allow for different possible deterrents, but removing the key must prevent the engine or motor from being activated as well as the vehicle’s steering and/or forward mobility.

While there are some exceptions, vehicles must, under this standard, feature “an audible warning” to alert the driver whenever the nearest door opens while the key is still left in the ignition. The audio alert does not need to play in certain situations, such as if the key cannot turn from its position within the starting system, though this just applies to mechanical systems.

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Control Arm Issues Initiate GM Recall

Warren, MI — May 31, 2016 — A group of eight vehicle models, including Cadillac, Chevrolet and GMC names, are subject to a new overarching recall concerning suspension front control arms. After the manufacturer’s report date of April 27, 4,789 potential units are part of this action and may leave drivers in danger of a sudden loss of control while steering.

This is a relatively recent recall, with the official vehicle chronology only dating back to April 5. According to the Part 573 Safety Recall Report, available through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s website, the manufacturer noticed a “deformed” upper control arm in a GMC Yukon XL Denali, caused by incomplete welding within the vehicle. The control arm failure can occur no matter which speed the affected cars are driving, and may also be set off by “jarring road inputs.”

The issue traces back further to the component’s supplier, Multimatic Inmetmatic. The planned dealer notification date was listed as April 27, and after this, dealers were instructed to fix the vehicle alignment of these models and replace both the right and left front upper control arms. Since April 8, the supplier has improved its manufacturing process to reduce possible dangers and make these cars more compliant with General Motors regulations.

No specific owner notification date was listed in this report, though it did state that the manufacturer will reveal the official mail date when it becomes available. All of the affected vehicles carry either the 2016 or 2017 model years.

The models themselves include the Cadillac Escalade and Escalade ESV, the Chevrolet Silverado 1500, Suburban and Tahoe, and the GMC Sierra, Yukon and Yukon XL. The manufacturer urges owners to contact the individual companies involved in each of these GM recalls for more information.

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GM Recalls Pickup Trucks for Seatbelt Problems

Detroit, MI — May 11, 2016 — A new General Motors recall will include hundreds of thousands of domestic pickup trucks. A press release published by Autoblog detailed the seat belt structure issues that could exist in 895,232 trucks, including thousands of newer vehicles that need to be stopped on their lots. The international recall will account for slightly more than 1 million vehicles in countries across multiple continents, including Latin America and the Middle East.

The problem in these vehicles comes from weak cables in the bodies that could eventually sever over time. Drivers can cause wear to the cable as they move in and out of the front seat. Dealers will solve the problem by inspecting and fixing the tensioner. This will require them to either add a pusher bracket or replace the tensioner assembly altogether, as need be.

The recall affects two different models: the Chevrolet Silverado and the GMC Sierra 1500. For both, the model years of concern are 2014 and 2015, with these same years also holding true for the related stop-sale notice.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the GMC 1500 is the source of other recent owner complaints from across the country. On April 5, a consumer in Port Byron, Illinois, noted exterior lighting problems that made it difficult to see while driving at night. An earlier issue, observed in Hiram, Georgia, concerned the abnormal vibration in the vehicle’s cabin. This persisted even after the rear suspension and tire were replaced on advice of the dealer.

Both Silverado and Sierra trucks, from the same years as this recall, were involved in a different one launched last October. In that case, the company and the NHTSA noted that the ignition lock actuator could keep keys stuck forward and make it difficult to remove them.

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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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For GM SUVs, Faulty Brake Pedal Means Recall

Warren, MI — February 19, 2016 — According to Reuters, a new recall across North America will target vehicles with potentially loose brake pedal pivot systems. Currently, there are no reports of injuries stemming from this fault, which could be present in Chevrolet Silverado HD and Tahoe vehicles, as well as the GMC Sierra. Dealers will inspect and tighten the loose pivot nuts, using adhesive to keep them in place. This will reduce the chance of a brake pedal failure.

“Recall numbers exceed 473,000 across all of the endangered brands.”

Though the bulk of the recalled units are in the United States, 46,837 of these vehicles are in Canada. As of this writing, there are no reports on these new GM recalls filed with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

In the United States, recall numbers exceed 473,000 across all of the endangered brands. Multiple sources note that the targeted vehicles include those used for police action.

Last month, General Motors issued a statement expressing support for “proactive safety principles” as that organization works with major automakers.

“At GM, we are focused on the customer, and we put safety at the forefront of everything we do,” this release said. “We welcome the opportunity to continue to work with experts in government and industry on the vital issues of automotive safety and cybersecurity.” It also singled out Anthony Foxx of the Department of Transportation and Mark Rosekind of NHTSA for particular praise.

While owners wait for more information, the Associated Press reports that the brake pedal failure could trigger the brake lights to stay on unusually long periods of time, as Canadian regulators note.

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GM Trucks Recalled for Compartment Spring Error

Warren, MI — February 03, 2016 — Some General Motors-produced trucks include door latch assemblies that may not comply with regulations. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, vehicles with this fault may have console compartment doors that will open during a crash.

The NHTSA states this is a possible passenger risk, because the contents of the compartment could fall out. Nearly 9,000 vehicles may potentially be involved in this recall, issued because these doors were built with the incorrect spring in the latch assembly. General Motors’ console supplier, Yanfeng, noticed the issue last September, and the Manufacturer’s report was issued on November 30, the same date on which dealers were notified.

To fix the error, dealers have to replace the wrong assembly spring with the right one. The NHTSA notes that the GM recall affects Chevrolet and GMC Colorado vehicles, both made for the model year 2016.

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GM Windshield Wiper Motor Fire Risk

Warren, MI — November 13, 2015 — 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.
Thank you for watching! Be sure to read our blog for more information on GM recalls.
Sean ReyesGM Windshield Wiper Motor Fire Risk

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.

Thank you for watching! Be sure to read our blog for more information on GM recalls.

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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.

Thank you far watching, and check back for the latest news on GM recalls.

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GM Finally Settles Ignition Switch Recall

New York City, NY — October 05, 2015 — General Motors has been grappling with the fallout of its ignition switch recall for more than two years, and now the manufacturer seems to finally be reaching a settlement with federal authorities. The Associated Press reports that the company is scheduled to pay a fine by September 24, in response to a recall of 2.6 million vehicles, including models under the Chevrolet brand.

The company is expected to pay $900 million over this case, with $1 million going to the families of victims of fatal accidents connected to these autos, and $625 million dedicated to additional compensation. The agreement comes after GM received a $35 million fine from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) last year, the highest civil penalty for recall-related actions.

A timeline from the AP shows the sequence of events leading to this agreement. The roots of the ignition switch recall trace back to 2002, when the offending switch design was first approved. The first death connected to these faulty systems was reported on July, 19, 2005. CEO Mary Barra reportedly didn’t learn about the switches until 2013.

Back in the 2014 NHTSA press release, acting administrator David Friedman affirmed the organization’s dedication to pursuing proper actions.

“No excuse, process, or organizational structure will be allowed to stand in the way of any company meeting their obligation to quickly find and fix safety issues in a vehicle,” he said then. “It’s critical to the safety of the driving public that manufacturers promptly report and remedy safety-related defects that have the potential to lead to deaths or injuries on our nation’s highways.”

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