Auto Recalls: Are They Important?

Volkswagen recently recalled 800,000 Tiguan compact sport-utility vehicles affecting the United States and China, according to a new report from Bloomberg.com. The recalls are part of a broader global initiative to fix gearbox issues on more than 2.6 million vehicles bearing the VW logo. 

While costs to Volkswagen are expected to be relatively small given the extent of the vehicles affected, no recall can ever be taken lightly if you’re a consumer.

Recalls can cause a number of issues that affect your health and well-being, and even your auto insurance. Today, we look at how:

Your Health And Well-Being

Earlier this year, Takata, Inc., one of the largest airbag manufacturers in the world, sent out faulty airbags that ran a risk of catching on fire or shooting out shards of metal. While the company was able to correct the issue before it became lethal, the issue could have easily broken the other way, resulting in serious injury (at best).

The “What if?” part of a recall is the first reason why consumers should get these issues fixed right away and not ignore the notice that manufacturers send in the mail. In fact, whenever a recall notification is received, taking care of the issue promptly should become priority number one for every car owner. It’s not worth taking a chance on your life or the lives of your family members.

Also, the greater the safety risk, the more your health insurance might be affected in the event of an accident, and that’s an ancillary expense that can end up costing you more than the actual accident.

Your Auto Insurance

While physical safety should be your first priority when dealing with an automobile recall, you should not overlook the impact it can have on your auto insurance.

For starters, choosing cars with a poor safety rating will result in higher premiums from the get-go. Most consumers are aware of this. However, what some may not be aware of is that failing to act on a recall can result in higher premiums if you get into an accident and an insurer discovers that proper safety precautions were not met. As the finance site NerdWallet points out:

“If you neglect to repair a recalled part and get into an accident as a result, the car’s safety rating will be affected, which could increase your insurance rates.”

Furthermore, cars with continual recall issues are likely to put you in harm’s way and create an increase in claims, which can negatively impact what you’re paying each month for auto insurance.

While a simple recall is beyond your control and will not directly lead to paying more for auto insurance, the residual impact is not to be taken lightly. It’s best to research the safety rating of a car you plan on buying. If the car performs poorly, rethink the transaction.

In Summary

Auto recalls often take us off guard. They can be inconvenient and seemingly not worth the trouble when the issue isn’t critical. However, no matter how small a recall issue might be, you owe it to yourself, your family, and your pocketbook, to get the issue handled as soon as you can. They’re fast, they’re free, and they can get you back on the road with your peace of mind intact.

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