Under pressure from the federal government, General Motors is recalling between 3.4 and 3.8 million pickup trucks and SUVs in the U.S and Canada to fix a brake problem.
The recall covers the Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra 1500, 2500 and 3500 pickups from the 2014 through 2018 model years. Also included are the Cadillac Escalade from 2015 to 2017. In addition, the GMC Yukon and Chevy Suburban and Tahoe from 2015 through 2018.
In addition, GM is also recalling over 177,000 Chevrolet Malibu sedans from the 2018 model year in the U.S. This is because the fuel injectors can fail.
Why The Recall?
GM says that as it ages, the pump in the power-assist brakes can put out less vacuum power than needed. This increases the stopping distance and the risk of a crash. The vacuum pump is lubricated with engine oil that flows through a filter screen. In addition, in some of the trucks the oil sludge or other debris can clog the screen. As a result, reducing oil flow and causing the pump’s vacuum output to drop, GM spokesperson Dan Flores said.
The brake issue has resulted in 113 accidents and 13 injuries, although no fatalities are reported yet, Flores tells CNN. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the government’s road safety agency, began investigating the problem in November of last year after getting 111 complaints of poor brake performance. At the time the agency had nine reports of crashes that had caused two injuries. However, GM has only been in contact with the NHTSA for several months on the issue.
GM says the problems occur rarely and mostly at low speeds like driving in parking lots. The trucks have a secondary power brake assist system which works when there are problems with the main system, but it is limited at lower speeds. The reprogramming will activate the secondary system faster.
The recall comes 10 months after NHTSA opened its investigation, and over two months after the recall announced in Canada. Asked why it took that long to do the recall, Flores said only that the company is cooperating with NHTSA and providing data. He said GM would have done the recall even without the NHTSA investigation.
What Should I Look Out For?
Drivers should be aware of and cautious of a vibration in the brake pedal. In addition, check for a change in pressure required to push the brake pedal if their trucks have the vacuum pump problem. If the problem surfaces, owners see a message on their dashboard telling them to service the brake assist system.
Owners will be notified this month if their vehicle is effected. Dealers will reprogram the electronic brake control module in these vehicles with a new calibration, which improve how the system utilizes the hydraulic brake boost assist function when vacuum assist is depleted. In addition, dealers will reprogram the engine control computer to correct the problem.
GM stated that dealers will recalibrate the electronic brake control module at no cost to customers.
What If I Get A GM Brake Recall Notice In The Mail?
If you received a recall notice from General Motors for your defective brakes, contact the defective product lawyers at Sweet Lawyers. The GM brake recall needs to be taken seriously. With over 100 accidents already caused by this dangerous defect, your life could be in danger. Call our offices today at (800) 674 7852 to learn if failing brakes lead to your car accident. You deserve the best legal representation. We are here to help.