Recalls seem to be flavour of the week at the moment, with manufacturer after manufacturer pulling vehicles back to either adjust things, or fit replacement parts and the latest two come from Nissan and Lexus, so here’s the story of what’s gone wrong and how to fix it.
Nissan is conducting a Voluntary Safety Recall on several Nissan and Infiniti models across the world to replace an Engine Control Module relay or Ignition relay. Apparently, the relay may develop some oxidation on the electrical contacts which may lead to the car not starting, or the engine stalling. Nissan say they are not aware of any reported accidents or injuries due to this issue.
Owners of potentially affected vehicles will be contacted by Nissan and asked to take their vehicle to a Nissan or Infiniti dealer for repair for the relay unit to be replaced. The job only takes around 20 minutes and there won’t be any charge to the customer.
We run quite a number of Nissan’s on our Leasing fleet and have to say, we have found their customer service to be at the highest level, so we are sure this getting this recall rectified is going to be a simple process for the drivers involved, but if you need any more information, you can contact Nissan Customer Services on 01923 899334.
The Lexus recall or should I say recall’s as there is two of them, both referred to as “voluntary” but potentially more serious, as one can cause your car simply to stop and the other is a braking issue which I suppose could feasibly cause you car not to stop.
OK, first recall relates to the IS, GS and RX models built between February 2003 and November 2005 and relates to a seal between the brake master cylinder and the brake booster may turn in its seat, causing brake fluid to leak into the brake booster. Lexus say that in the very unlikely event that this happens, the driver will be alerted to the problem by the low brake fluid warning light. Apparently, the brakes will continue to work normally for a significant time which Lexus say is over 200 miles of regular driving and they also say that they know of no accidents which have been caused by this issue. The repair is going to take around 2 hours to complete and the customer won’t be charged, however it’s reported that there are something like 15,400 vehicles in the UK that are going to be affected.
Lexus recall 2, relates to the fuel pump on GS 300 models built between September 2004 and February 2006. Expansion and contraction of the fuel tank may stretch the fuel pump’s electrical harness. This may lead to a break in the circuit, causing the fuel pump, and so the engine, to stop without warning. Lexus knows of no reported accidents as a result of this issue.
The repair involves replacement of the fuel pump wiring harness, a job that takes about three hours. The work will be done at no cost to the customer. The recall affects 2,081 UK-registered cars.
Recalls for issues such as these have always happened, and it seems like that the number of cars affected by a recall just gets bigger and bigger all the time and that’s pretty much true. The reason for that is because of the way the cars are built. In an effort to keep production costs down, vehicle manufacturers often use the same component across their entire range of vehicles and so when they find a fault with it, the recall could literally involve millions of vehicles.
Car manufacturers don’t want recalls, and before a component or combination of components is used in building a vehicle, they are tested to a much greater extent than would ever be experienced as part of a finished vehicle. That said, things go wrong, hence the recalls above, but in our experience, car makers have always been quick to put their hands up and despite the huge costs involved in a recall like the ones above and of course, the potential damage to their reputation, they never hide from their responsibility, so we can all feel comfortable that if “they” know about it, they are going to tell us and going to fix it for us very quickly and without any cost.