2M Toyota RAV4s Risk Fire Hazard

2021 NHTSA Investigation: Voluntary Recall

Roughly over 2.2 million Toyota RAV4 crossovers are requiring to be recalled in North America as a consequence of the danger of fire. Out of that amount, approximately 1.85 million automobiles can be found in the US , meanwhile 306,000 units located in Canada and Mexico are included among the potentially affected vehicles, according to Toyota spokesperson Josh Burns shared with Automotive News.

Toyota affirms that the source of the trouble derives from the 12-volt battery in the RAV4. Even though those straight out of the factory should not have any issues, a lesser replacement as a result of the smaller upper measurements of the clamp put up a possible problem. This inconsistency has the potential to bring about the fastener clamp being incorrectly tightened, yielding an occurrence of movement in the battery tray when hard turns are executed. As a consequence of this, contact of the positive link with the hold-down clamp can cause a possibility of electric shorts and subsequently fire threats.

The Office of Defects Investigation presented an NHTSA document in 2021, which brought to light the issue that had been under investigation. The document revealed that 11 complaints had been submitted, all of which were classified as “non-crash thermal” events. Most of the reported incidents occurred when the RAV4 was in motion, with only four taking place while the vehicle’s ignition was off. According to the report, some of the drivers mentioned that their RAV4s had stalled before catching fire.

Although it’s clear that certain external factors led to these incidents, including failure to correctly secure the battery hold-down clamps during replacement, NHTSA nevertheless chose to conduct an inquiry based on the similarities across the reports.

The earlier research has prompted Toyota to issue a voluntary recall to correct the difficulty. NHTSA has yet to make known the mandatory recall papers, but the car manufacturer has demonstrated that only 2013-2018 model year RAV4 units are struck. Toyota will begin getting in contact with troubled customers by late December of 2023.

If you own a fourth-generation RAV4 produced in the indicated model years, we advise that you phone your vendor to verify if your unit is one of the ones recalled. Even better yet, open the hood of your car and make sure the battery -we expect it has already been exchanged by this point- is properly secured in place. This shouldn’t pose too much trouble as compared with the effort put in when transferring a Prius battery.

Toyota has indicated that they are in the process of planning a resolution to the matter. At no fee, dealers will be exchanging the retaining strap for the battery, the battery shelf, and the positive terminal covers with advanced versions.

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