There's a new, easier way to find out if a used vehicle you are interested in purchasing has been subject to a recall. But nothing in life is free, including this information.
Speedemissions Inc., a leader in the vehicle emissions and safety inspections industry, with 43 locations in Atlanta, Houston, St. Louis and Salt Lake City, and the developer of CARbonga-SRI and CARbonga, the automobile diagnostic iPhone apps, will be offering retail customers an automobile manufacturer safety recall history for their make and model dating back to 1996.
In addition, the information will be available at the Company’s new automobile manufacturer safety recall data web site, www.BuyCarSafety.com.
Why is this info important? As previously reported, private owners, to a large degree, do not get their used cars fixed when subject to a safety recall. After 18 months, only 70% of recall work has been done. That means almost one-third of the work isn't being done.
The comprehensive report titled the “Automotive Data Vehicle Information Safety Report” (“ADVISR”) highlights the complete safety recall history of the make and model describing in detail the following important points:
- Component: identifies the item(s) being recalled
- Defect Summary: provides details on the defective item/system
- Consequence Summary: clearly defines what happens if not corrected
- Corrective Summary: outlines the measures required by the dealer to fix the safety recall item
The report also provides the steps required to determine if the automobile has ever been recalled for a safety issue that can affect the operation of the car. The ADVISR allows vehicle owners to be proactive in obtaining critical information on the history of their vehicle, allowing them to seek remedy, counsel and repair before any potential threatening malfunction or hazardous event occurs.
“To put the real value of the Automotive Data Vehicle Information System Report in perspective, understand that there are over 250 million vehicles on the road in the U.S. You should also know that in a February 2014 report by the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration there were 632 recalls issued in 2013 totaling 22 million vehicles - but incredibly, the 18 largest automakers noted there were only 184 recalls,” said Rich Parlontieri, President and CEO of Speedemissions, in a press release announcing the new site.
“Going one step further, for the five-year period of 2009-2013, NHTSA reports that nearly 90 million vehicles were recalled with some makes and models having as many as 14 recalls over a 10-year period. And in 2011, all 18 of the major automobile manufacturers had one or more of their models recalled," added Parlontieri.
To view an ADVISR sample report, visit here. Is it a perfect system? Not entirely because there is a charge associated with seeing the reports. BuyCarSafety will tell you there are recalls and technical service bulletins for your used car but it won't tell you what they are. That's where the paid reports come in. (Our Auto Repair site has a good explanation of the difference between recalls and technical service bulletins – also known as TSBs.)
But we'll save you from clicking. Here is the gist: The first is when a vehicle has a safety related defect as determined by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHSTA). This would be a Mandatory Recall. A Voluntary Recall is when the manufacturer recalls vehicles for a defect not necessarily related to safety. Any repairs made under a recall is paid for by the manufacturer.
A Technical Service Bulletin (TSB) is issued when a known problem or condition exists in a certain vehicle(s) and contains a repair for that problem. A TSB can also be issued to notify dealerships of diagnostic procedure changes, modified or improved parts or service manual revisions and updates.
Speedemissions can now offer their customers, which last year amounted to almost a quarter million, and any other car owner one who visits the www.buycarsafety.com website, quick and accurate answers to the following questions, “Has my vehicle ever been recalled ?" and "What dangers could I be facing?” In a matter of minutes the customer will get essentially everything they need to know about the recall status of their car. At a minimal cost, the ADVISR provides not only the benefit of safety recall status, but has the added feature of giving consumers the number of TSB's (Technical Service Bulletins) issued on that make and model.
“We've been diligently working to find a solution that brings the CARbonga-SRI app file to the everyday market. The ADVISR, offered through our www.buycarsafety.com website does just that. Plus, in light of what has transpired with the manufacturer recalls in just the early stages of 2014, we are very encouraged by what this forward-thinking initiative can mean to the Company,” said Parlontieri.