Defects and Recalls: Here’s Why You Should Check Your Windshield

Recalled cars and car parts aren’t just a nuisance: they’re also a safety hazard.

Today, we’re talking about recalls, including why you need to pay attention, what to check for, and how to get your car fixed.

What are recalls?

Recalls are issued for two reasons: a motor vehicle or part doesn’t meet Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards, or there is a defect related to safety in the vehicle or part. 

A recall happens after the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration investigates consumer complaints and finds a safety risk. After the recall is issued, the manufacturer of the car or the car part is required to fix the problem. This could be by repairing the part, replacing the part, or even repurchasing the car. Manufacturers can also issue recalls voluntarily. 

What can be recalled?

Just about any car or car part can be recalled. For example, several years ago, many Toyota vehicles were recalled for “sudden unintended acceleration.” There was a problem with the accelerator that prevented drivers from slowing down, and it caused dozens of crash-related deaths. More recently, millions of vehicles have been recalled for having Takata air bags. These air bags can explode when deployed.

Even windshields can be subject to recalls. For example, earlier this year, some aftermarket replacement windshields were recalled voluntarily by Fujian Wanda Automobile Glass Industry. These windshields were made to be used in 2014-2018 Toyota Highlanders. The problem? The windshields had an attached wire harness that could allow a water leak into the Engine Control Module.

Windshields can be defective in other ways, too. Here are a few examples:

  • Wavy or distorted glass: If your windshield glass is wavy or distorted, it likely means the manufacturer made a mistake when heating and cooling the glass. This is a defect because it makes the windshield weaker.
  • Too easily damaged: If your windshield gets a chip or crack with no obvious cause, this is a sign it could be defective.
  • Wrong size: Windshields are a complex car part that must be perfectly sized to fit your car. If it is the wrong size, this is a defect.
  • Improper installation: If your windshield wasn’t installed correctly, it will not protect you properly during a car accident. If you notice water leakage around the windshield, hear a whistling or “whooshing” sound or a rattling sound coming from your windshield, or see that the windshield isn’t flush with your car’s frame, this likely means the windshield wasn’t installed correctly.

Where can you check for recalls?

Manufacturers of defective windshields and other parts are required to send car owners a notice in the mail. This notice should contain information on how and where to fix the problem. If you receive a recall notice, you should go to your local dealer to get the problem fixed for free.

You can also check for recalls on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration website. You can even set up email alerts.

Why should you check for recalls?

Car defects cause accidents every year, and people are injured and even die as a result.

Windshields provide around 60 percent of the structural integrity of your car. If it is defective, this means it will be weaker—and you could be seriously injured if you get in an accident.

To protect yourself and your family, it’s important to pay attention to recalls. 

If your car’s windshield or other part is recalled, you need to get it fixed right away.

Call Us Today

We hope you have a safe and happy summer! If your windshield needs repaired or replaced, we’re here to help.

Our local, family-owned and -operated business has been helping Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky homeowners with their commercial glass, auto glass, glass shower and window needs for more than 70 years. Contact us today at our Elsmere, Covington, or Dry Ridge locations.