Consumer Reports on the Kia and Hyundai Fire Risk Recalls

If you have been around for the last few years, you have probably heard of the Kia and Hyundai fire risk recalls. These recalls cover cars and sport utility vehicles from both brands that could potentially catch on fire for a few reasons. If you are considering buying a vehicle that a recall might have impacted, there’s a website below where you can check.

Kia and Hyundai fire risk recalls have impacted many vehicles

Consumer Reports did a bit of a deep dive into these recalls for Kia and Hyundai vehicles. Kia and Hyundai have recalled more than seven million cars and SUVs for fire risks. Since 2010, more than 3,000 Hyundai and Kia vehicles have caught fire.

Those fires left 103 people injured and killed one, which led to an investigation by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. While the exact cause of the fires is still under investigation, it could have something to do with both manufacturers’ engines.

Faulty wiring, brake system issues, and battery problems could also increase the fire risk. The NHTSA is not currently investigating these but still pose a threat. Consumer Reports says that over the past 12 years, more than seven million car recalls concerning vehicles catching fire have gone out.

Investigations are ongoing for the Kia and Hyundai fire risk recalls

If you are interested in buying a new car but have heard about the Kia and Hyundai fire risk recalls, it is good to be informed. Both Hyundai and Kia have been working hard on making reliable vehicles, but are separate brands.

“Hyundai Motor Company is the largest shareholder in Kia Motors, with 33.88 percent ownership. The two brands share many of the same parts from the same suppliers, including some of the parts at risk of catching fire.”

Consumer Reports

A faulty connecting rod bearing in the engine is one suggested cause of the fires. If this fails, you might hear a knocking sound, feel vibrations, or even stall the engine. In the worst-case scenario, the rod could puncture the engine block, which causes an oil leak that eventually could lead to a fire.

Kia and Hyundai have installed a knock sensor detection system (KSDS) that will hopefully catch a failing connecting rod bearing before any damage occurs. If the KSDS picks up on a potential issue, the vehicle will eventually slow down and shut off.

Both automakers have implemented some fixes

Consumer Reports on the Kia and Hyundai fire risk recalls
Brand new Hyundai Santa Fe SUVs | Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
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There is also a potential issue with the antilock braking system (ABS) shorting out. Kia and Hyundai instructed some owners to park outside as this can spark a fire, even if the vehicle is parked.

Hyundai offered a statement to Consumer Reports, noting, “Hyundai actively monitors and evaluates potential safety concerns, including non-collision fires, with all our vehicles.” The statement also pointed out that the number of vehicles recalled doesn’t mean there were actual fires. Kia said it was continuing to investigate and evaluate its cars.

Use the NHTSA website to check if a recall exists for your car. You need your car’s vehicle identification number (VIN) on the windshield’s bottom left corner. Ensure that someone has addressed these recalls before buying any new or used vehicle.