Information & Tips

Recalls Rolling Out of Control

HondaIf you own a Honda, you may want to be careful not to park it on a slope. It’s hard to believe, but another massive recall has just been announced. This time, the automaker is Honda, and they’re recalling some 428,000 cars in the US and Canada due to a defect that could cause improperly parked cars to roll away.

All 2003 and 2004 model year Accord, Civic, and Elements are being recalled in the US. A parallel recall in Canada covers these models, as well as some Acura 1.7ELs.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration upgraded its inquiry into this potential defect in 2009. At that time, Honda has received reports of 10 crashes relating to this defect, while NHTSA had received 11 reports. One woman claimed that she had almost been run over by her car when it was parked in her driveway.

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Toyota Issues Yet Another Recall

Toyota ServiceIt’s déjà vu all over again, as Toyota announces yet another recall. This time, the beleaguered automaker is recalling 412,000 cars in the US, to fix problems relating to the steering mechanism.

The recall includes 373,000 Toyota Avalon sedans with model years 2000 to 2004. According to Toyota, a component of the steering lock system can crack. It is at the most risk when the sedan is steered hard to the right. Six incidents have been reported in the US, but no injuries have been reported. Toyota will cover the fix, which takes about two hours.

39,000 Lexus LX 470 SUVs, model year 2003-2007, have also been recalled. The SUVs have a separate steering shaft problem, unrelated to the issue prompting the Avalon recall.

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Jailbreaking Declared Legal

unlock smThough the very terms “jailbreaking” and “unlocking” sound sketchy, the US government has just issued the final word- jailbreaking and/or unlocking one’s cell phone is legal, and owners who choose to do so will not find themselves in trouble.

The public has long been in the dark about the legality about these issues, and many don’t even understand what they mean. For the record, unlocking is usually done to enable to the owner to receive service from another carrier (ie: not AT&T), and jailbreaking is done to enable the use of “rogue” apps, or to make advanced customizations.

Though some have questioned the legality, the practice of unlocking and jailbreaking has become extremely common. So many iPhone users have switched to alternate carriers that T-Mobile has been providing iPhone support for well over a year now, and it seems that new unlocking services are popping up every day, taking advantage of the fact that this business can be carried out entirely online.

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The Beat Goes On as Chrysler, Ford Issue Recall

Recal dots

It’s become even harder to find an automaker who hasn’t issued a major recall this year, as Chrysler and Ford just announced a planned recall of some 54,000 vehicles today.

Ford is recalling over 30,000 2010 Transit Connect vans, in order to replace pushpins that hold the liner above the drivers’ head. According to the company, government testing revealed that it failed to meet federal safety standards. Ford will begin their recall this month.

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Lexus Loses Face, Recalls 270,000 Vehicles

Loser smToyota Motor Corp has officially issued a recall of some 270,000 Lexus and Toyota Crown vehicles, making good on the plans announced last week. Vehicles will be recalled in the US, Japan, Canada, Europe, Australia, and other countries. The recall is due to potential defects that may lead to engine failures. Small valve springs made of low-quality metal can crack, possibly resulting in the engine stalling.

According to a statement issued by the luxury automaker, “Lexus estimates that the likelihood of a customer experiencing this condition is 0.2%.” If an owner were to have an issue, the automaker says they would experience rough idling or abnormal engine noise.

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