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How to Check if my Car has a Recall

How to Check if my Car has a Recall

When people face a problem in their car the first thing they do is to contact a local mechanic. One thing that people must realize is that maybe other people too are having the same problem in a car of same model. If such is the case then a recall is initiated and the cars are called back by the company and usually a free repair is done. But people often do not respond to these recalls or even remain ignorant about it as they often don’t realize what a recall actually is. To know more about car recall keep reading the OneHowTo article How to check if my car has a recall.

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What is a car recall?

We may sometime find defects in our car and, surprisingly, it might not occur due to rash driving or due to any other factors. It can be due to an engineering defect in the car during the time of its manufacture. Consumers who feel such is the case should report it to National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration (NHSTA). If there are many complaints of the same type then NHSTA begins an investigation of the issue. If a fault is found on the manufacturer’s side then the car is recalled either by the manufacturer or by the government and repaired for free.

So, basically a car recall occurs when NHSTA finds out safety related defects in the car or when its safety standards do not comply with the federal safety standard.

How to know if my car has a recall?

When a car model or models are recalled, car companies send letters to the customer owning the defective models. This letter is known as recall letter. A recall letter contains the description of the defect and the risk it poses. Also it includes the warning signs of the defect and a description as to how the company is going to fix the defect. A recall letter also contains instructions as to what you should do next.

IF you have received no such recall letter, yet you suspect that your car model is being recalled then you can confirm it by visiting the website of NHTSA. There you can search whether your car has been recalled or not through “Search for Recalls by VIN”. Then you would be directed to a page where you have to enter the VIN. After that you will get a confirmed response so you know whether your car has been recalled or not.

Recalls in secondhand vehicles

You might have bought a secondhand car and are not sure if it has been recalled in the past. You should know that the previous owner should hand in all the car's paperwork when he or she sells the car, therefore, a trusted secondhand dealer should show you the car's paperwork before you purchase the vehicle.

If you are suspicious, Search for recalls by the car's VIN (Vehicle Indentification Number) to make sure the car has not been recalled.

If the car has in fact been recalled, make sure you also get the paperwork from the car company to confirm the fault has been repaired properly. For more information, take a look at our article on What to check when inspecting a used car.

If you'd like to read similar articles to How to Check if my Car has a Recall, we recommend you browse around our Car Maintenance and Repair category.

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How to Check if my Car has a Recall