SUV owners warned to park outside over fire risk

Ford is expanding a recall of SUVs and telling owners to park them outside after a series of engine fires that can happen even when the ignitions are off
Published: Jul. 12, 2022 at 1:32 PM MST
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PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) — Ford is expanding a recall of SUVs and telling owners to park the vehicles outside because of a fire risk. The automaker says the fires can happen even when the ignition is off.

The original recall was announced in May, involving about 39,000 2021 Ford Expeditions and Lincoln Navigators. The expanded recall now covers 66,221 vehicles.

According to Ford, there have been 21 reports of under-hood fires, with 18 incidents involving SUVs owned by rental companies. In those cases, one injury has been reported. In a statement, Ford said it believes the fires have been caused by faulty printed circuit boards. For some of the vehicles involved in the recall, repairs can happen immediately, but for others, Ford says the parts won’t be available until September.

“A three month delay is kind of normal,” said Michael Brooks, the acting executive director of the Center for Auto Safety. “Sometimes we’ll see six or nine months and that’s when we’re not really happy and that’s when owners get really mad, especially in this situation where you can’t park in your garage. That puts a lot of people out.”

It’s the latest in a series of vehicle recalls involving possible fires. According to Brooks, over the past year there has been an increase in vehicle recalls, and he says about a dozen of them have included guidance to park outside because of fire risks.

“We’ve seen a new focus on fire recalls from [the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration]. They’ve been getting the word out to owners in a way they’ve never done before to make sure that owners know not to park these things inside or not to charge them indoors,” Brooks said. “It really helps for owners to pay attention to what their manufacturer is telling them because it can literally save your life.”

There are currently about 1.28 million vehicles on the road in Arizona with at least one open recall, according to Carfax. The company says that number is down about 5% from last year. Check for recalls here.