Unknown Recalls: I-Team informs drivers

EMBED </>More Videos

In just one hour, the ABC7 I-Team found four vehicle owners driving around with potentially dangerous, unfixed recalls. (WLS)

ABC7 I-Team Investigation
It's estimated that one in every five vehicles on the road has a recall and some can put you at risk. Federal law says that an automobile manufacturer must notify the registered owner of a vehicle about a recall. But for many reasons, drivers may not get those notices.

In just one hour, the ABC7 I-Team found four vehicle owners driving around with potentially dangerous, unfixed recalls.

ABC7's Jason Knowles: "But you didn't know about one of them. What's your reaction?"

Driver Steven Hendrickson: "That one, that's definitely one to get fixed is that transmission cable. Driving down 90 and having my transmission going out on me would not be a whole lot of fun."

Hendrickson says didn't know about the transmission recall on his car, but now that he does he'll be racing to get it fixed. With the help of Carfax, we used the company's free "My Carfax" app to run license plates and find manufacturer recalls.

Hendrickson says he knew about two of those recalls. The problem, according to auto safety experts, is that drivers are either delaying needed repairs or they just don't know.

Sometimes required manufacturer notices get overlooked, lost, or people move. Used car dealerships and private sellers also don't have to notify buyers of recalls, the number of which are skyrocketing.

"A record shattering year with over 60 million cars recalled. Alarmingly, 46 million cars are on the road with an unfixed recall," said Christopher Basso, CARFAX.

ABC7's Jason Knowles: "We actually ran your license plate though an app through CARFAX. Did you know you have an airbag recall?"

"No, I didn't know I had it," said Jim Powers, a driver.

"What happens is if you are in an accident, the airbag can literally explode," Basso said.

Powers says he never received a September notice about a driver side airbag recall, and Amy Dennis admits that she didn't realize how serious her airbag recall notice was.

"I have five kids, we have a very full life. I read the notice and thought, 'Is it really life threatening?'" said Amy Dennis, a driver.

To proactively monitor recalls, you can call your dealer or manufacturer, check every time you get your oil changed or car serviced, run your VIN number at: safercar.gov, or use that free my CARFAX app.

"It is almost reaching epidemic proportions because people simply don't know or aren't taking the time to get their recalls fixed," Basso said.
But it's not always on the consumer. Robert Appleton says he tried with no luck, yet, to get his sliding backseat fixed.

"No, because the dealer has not contacted me saying they have the part. They say they would call back, saying they have it. They have not called yet," Appleton said.

In June, the I-Team reported on the recall pile up: the record-breaking number of recalls backing up dealerships and manufacturers, forcing customers to wait weeks or months for parts to be replaced.

The situation has improved but industry experts say it's still an ongoing issue. In those cases, if you're waiting on a serious safety repair, the manufacturer should pay for a rental car.

For more info visit http://www.mycarfax.com
Related Topics:
automotiveauto recallapptechnologyI-TeamChicago - Downtown
(Copyright ©2018 WLS-TV. All Rights Reserved.)