Unfixed Recalls Jumps 34 Percent in 2017

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Feb. 10, 2017—According to Carfax, more than 63 million recalled vehicles are now in use across the country, a 34 percent increase from 2016.

According to NHTSA data, only 75 percent of all recalled vehicles are fixed by automakers and their dealerships within 18 months of the recall being issued. A quarter go unrepaired. 

In a past feature with Ratchet+Wrench, Bill Haas, of Haas Performance Consulting, noted the opportunity recalls present for a shop.

“These are your customers whose vehicles are being recalled or have defects and issues,” he said. “These are the people you’ve spent your time and energy earning the trust of. Why would you want to leave it up to a dealer, or send them to a dealer, to get a recall issue fixed?”

The annual research suggests this issue affects nearly one in three vehicles in Texas, the highest rate in the nation. Hawaii, Mississippi, Louisiana and Alabama round out the top five.

In addition, drivers in California, Texas, Florida, Pennsylvania and New York have the most vehicles with open recalls.

The new data also suggests that family life may be a factor for some vehicle owners not knowing about a recall or getting it fixed. Minivans and SUVs—family-oriented vehicles—are the ones most likely to have unfixed recalls.

"Reducing the number of open recalls on the road is an ongoing effort," said Larry Gamache, communications director at Carfax. "Safety is our number one concern. Carfax, manufacturers and government are working together to make it easier for drivers to get accurate information and timely alerts about open recalls. It may be inconvenient, but people driving recalled cars should make getting them fixed a high priority."


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