When you hop into your vehicle, you expect it to be safe and compliant with local regulations. This is true, too, for car seats for children and the tires you use. Mistakes and compliance issues, however, are all too common. When this happens, the manufacturer is compelled to issue a safety recall and put a plan in place to address the problem.
Today, we look at what a vehicle recall is, how to find out if your vehicle or car seat are part of a recall and why you should always participate in a recall if it happens.
What exactly is a vehicle recall?
Vehicle recalls happen when a vehicle or car seat has an issue that requires fixing. Most often, they are related to manufacturing problems that mean the product doesn’t meet Canada’s safety requirements. Sometimes, these can be incredibly important to address right away. Others are still a risk but are less of an immediate problem.
To learn more about safety recalls for vehicles, car seats and tires, visit the Government of Canada’s dedicated webpage for these issues.
How do I know if my vehicle has a recall?
Today, many manufacturers will contact people directly in the event of a recall. They most often do this via email. You can also sign up for recall notices from your manufacturer. It’s important to remember that these emails can end up in your spam folder, so look there from time to time to ensure your vehicle is safe to drive.
There are plenty of resources available to Canadians for finding out if their vehicle or car seat has been recalled. The Canadian government keeps a database that you can look through for the latest in recalls. You can find that resource on their website. They also have a separate database for car seats.
You can also use the CarFax recall search tool to see if your specific vehicle has a recall. To use that, you just need to input your vehicle’s 17-character VIN.
Why should I comply with a recall?
Safety recalls are issued when there is a safety violation. It means your vehicle, car seat or tires are no longer meeting the safety requirements they need, putting you and your family at risk. Instead of risking safety, you should instead participate in a recall. Plus, car manufacturer’s almost always make these repairs free, so you can get the problem addressed without having to worry about it hitting your wallet.
What do I do if my vehicle has been recalled?
Most recall notices, whether they appear in your inbox or you find them in the databases, will come with instructions on what to do. Many of them will simply require you to go to a mechanic or dealership to have the problem addressed. Many vehicle recalls do not take a lot of time either, meaning you can get the issue addressed quickly.