CHECK THE SAFETY OF YOUR VEHICLE

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In this Blog, we examine and recommend a fantastic, free-to-use tool on the web that is great for checking the safety ratings, complaints, and “known issues” for any car.  We are referring to the excellent NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration) website, one of the most user friendly and data-rich automotive resources available today.

The US Government maintains this excellent online repository, and of course it’s free for anyone to utilize.  Ford, Honda, Volkwagen, GMC – they’re all here.  Want to check the safety rating of a vehicle you own, or are thinking about purchasing? How about open recalls? Consumer complaints? Yes, they’re all here, in one easy to use, user friendly layout.  

Upon landing at the NHTSA website home page, you’ll be presented with an easy to navigate, clutter free menu.  The first two menu choices – Ratings and Recalls – are where you’ll want to start.  Click “Ratings” and enter the year, make and model in the large search box.  You’ll be presented with a list of available models / options.  By clicking on the correct model, you’ll enter the database itself, where you’ll be presented with a plethora of useful information, ranging from safety ratings, recalls, complaints, and investigations.   You may also search by VIN number of the vehicle.

We highly recommend savvy car owners to utilize this website.  We were especially impressed with the vast amount of data available that is presented in a well laid-out, user friendly format.  All of the information you’d ever want relating to a particular automobile can be easily located on this excellent, free-to-use online resource.  

Please remember : if you have a vehicle AND it is under the manufacturer’s warranty, you are entitled to fair treatment and getting the problem fixed in a timely manner.  We at the California Lemon Law Expert can help!  In many cases, the manufacturer will repurchase your vehicle, and may even have to pay civil penalties and or reimbursement of your expenses. It helps to understand your rights as a consumer, and the California Lemon Law expert is here to help you or someone you may know who is in this situation. If your vehicle is not functioning properly and is under warranty, you have rights under the law that you need to thoroughly understand. Call us today for a free, no charge consultation at 916-672-8443.

HONDA INFOTAINMENT SYSTEMS NOT ENTERTAINING ANYONE

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Recently Honda customers are complaining in increasing numbers of problems arising from faulty Navigation / Infotainment systems and may soon reach class action lawsuit status. We have also been made aware of charging issues (for the “Clarity” electric vehicle) also exhibiting faults. There are numerous online forums filled with customer complaints about these defective infotainment systems and charging systems, affecting 2018-2019 Honda Pilot, Honda Odyssey and Honda Clarity.

Common complaints from owners of these Honda vehicles report that the Infotainment (“IVI”) system does not function as advertised. Bluetooth issues arise, cameras and sensor systems can become totally non-responsive, resulting in owners being unable to take advantage of these features. These defective systems lock up, cause system hang-ups / screen freezes / screen blanking, and a mountain of frustration for end-users.

What is unfortunate is Honda’s apparent lack of willingness to own up to the problem or be able to properly diagnose and provide a fix for these issues. In many reported cases, Honda technicians simply do not know how to proceed to properly diagnose or fix the problem. Entire systems have been replaced, to no avail. This has gone so far as to result in a downgraded rating from Consumer Reports regarding the 2018 Honda Odyssey which is “No Longer Recommended” due to “much-worse-than-average reliability, with problems including the infotainment display freezing and losing all functionality.”

Could this be another instance of faulty software / lack of proper testing?

Please remember: if you have a vehicle AND it is under the manufacturer’s warranty, you are entitled to fair treatment and getting the problem fixed in a timely manner. In many cases, the manufacturer will repurchase your vehicle, and may even have to pay civil penalties and or reimbursement of your expenses. It helps to understand your rights as a consumer, and the California Lemon Law expert is here to help you or someone you may know who is in this situation. If your vehicle is not functioning properly and is under warranty, you have rights under the law that you need to thoroughly understand. Call us today for a free, no charge consultation at 916-672-8443.

Ford Recalls Millions of F-150 and F-250 Trucks for Door Latch Issues

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Ford Motor Co recently announced that it will recall 1.34 million 2015-17 Ford F-150 and 2017 Ford Super Duty trucks in North America to add water shields to side door latches at a cost of $267 million.  Ford said the safety recall is due to a latch which can freeze, or a bent or kinked actuation cable in the affected vehicles, that may result in a door not opening or closing.  Customers are to be notified next month but did not have a timetable for when parts will be available.  Dealers supposedly will install water shields over the door latches and inspect and repair door latch cables if needed.

Ford has now recalled more than 5 million vehicles for many different door latch-related issues since 2016.  Also, this new recall is different from prior ones.  Ford communicated to its dealers warning that some 2015-2017 Ford F-150 trucks could have inoperative latches during freezing temperatures and suggested installing a water shield to circumvent the problem.  The company said it was not aware of any accidents or injuries associated with the issue but said because of the fault, the door may appear closed, increasing the risk of the door opening while driving.

Ford previously recalled approximately 4 million vehicles for door latch issues in six separate recalls since 2014, including 2.4 million vehicles recalled in August 2016.  In September 2016, Ford said it was taking a $640 million charge for its expanded side-door latch recalls.

Please remember : if you have a vehicle AND it is under the manufacturer’s warranty, you are entitled to fair treatment and getting the problem fixed in a timely manner. In many cases, the manufacturer will repurchase your vehicle, and may even have to pay civil penalties and or reimbursement of your expenses. It helps to understand your rights as a consumer, and the California Lemon Law expert is here to help you or someone you may know who is in this situation. If your vehicle is not functioning properly and is under warranty, you have rights under the law that you need to thoroughly understand. Call us today for a free, no charge consultation at 916-672-8443.

FORD CLASS ACTION UPDATE: FORD FOCUS AND FIESTA POWERSHIFT TRANSMISSION SETTLEMENT

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We at The CaliforiaLemonLawExpert.com  are assisting consumers who purchased or leased a 2011 through 2016 Ford Fiesta and 2012 through 2016 Ford Focus equipped with Ford’s Dual Clutch or “PowerShift” Transmission.

The lawsuit, entitled Vargas, et al. v. Ford Motor Company (Case No. CV12-08388 AB (FFMx)), has been resolved by a proposed settlement that has achieved preliminary approval by the United States District Court for the Central District of California (“the Settlement”).

If you are a current or former owner/lessee of a 2011-2016 Ford Fiesta or a 2012-2016 Ford Focus with a PowerShift Transmission (the “Class Vehicles”), you may be entitled to obtain benefits provided by the Settlement and the Orders of the Court.

What are your rights?
You may be entitled to receive money or other benefits that the Settlement provides. If you did not opt out of the Class, you are bound by the settlement results and can no longer sue Ford directly for the same legal claims alleged in the lawsuit.

What benefits does the Settlement provide?

  • If your Class Vehicle’s transmission is malfunctioning, you may be entitled to a repair or a repurchase of your vehicle, through an expedited binding arbitration program.
  • If an authorized Ford dealer performed three or more transmission Software Flashes on your vehicle while you owned or leased it, you may be entitled to up to $600 in cash payments.
  • If an authorized Ford dealer replaced three or more qualifying hardware parts in your PowerShift Transmission while you owned or leased the vehicle, you may be entitled to up to $2,325 in cash payments or up to $4,650 in Vehicle Discount Certificates.
  • If you paid for a repair to you PowerShift Transmission that you think should have been covered by warranty, you may be entitled to reimbursement.
  • If your vehicle was manufactured after June 5, 2013, and two or more clutch replacements were performed on your vehicle under warranty and you had to pay for a clutch replacement after warranty, you may be entitled to reimbursement.

How can we help?
Patrea Bullock and the CaliforniaLemonLawExpert.com can and will submit your claim.  We will advocate for you and work with you and Ford to make sure that you receive all compensation to which you are entitled.

What is the cost to you?
There is zero cost for you to have the CaliforniaLemonLawExpert.com  advocating for your rights ; the manufacturer is responsible for the fees.  Therefore, there’s no reason to hesitate in obtaining our help to ensure you receive your entitlement.

For more information about the case and the Settlement, please contact us at (916) 672-8443 and we will be happy to discuss your situation.

Subaru Engine Tuning Problems

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A recent lawsuit was filed against Subaru with regards to engine tuning problems.  The 2014-2016 Subaru Forester XT, Subaru WRX , WRX STI cars and SUV’s have engines too highly tuned.  This causes the engines to stall or surge.

A 2016 recall was ordered to fix the problems with the ignition timing.  The plaintiff in the case states this recall was a cover to secretly update the operating systems of the vehicles.  By doing so, these repairs de-tuned the engines in an effort to fix engine damage that had already been done.  The plaintiff is claiming that Subaru named the recall an emissions recall, thus ensuring an owner wouldn’t be able to renew the vehicle registration until the recall work was complete.

She is also claiming Subaru secretly installed when the vehicles were installed and did not warn Forester XT and WRX owners about this.

The lawsuit states drivers complained about their vehicles that sudden acceleration  or stall.  And when they took their cars in to be repaired, the technician would tell them they couldn’t find anything wrong with the car.

The plaintiff brought her 2014 Subaru Forester XT into the dealership in 2016 for the mandatory emissions recall.  While at the dealership, the plaintiff claims Subaru re-tuned the engine in an effort to fix the engine being tuned too tightly.  And the technicians  did not inform the owner that the engine would be re-tuned.  This caused the vehicle to surge and stall.  The vehicle went back to the dealership and the automaker initially refused to correct the engine problems but then finally offered to replace the engine after the plaintiff kept complaining. After being told the replacement engine would not be available for months, Subaru would not replace or buy back the Forester XT.

The lawsuit states engine tuning problems cause serious safety issues as well as decreased vehicle values.

 

Please remember : if you have a vehicle AND it is under the manufacturer’s warranty, you are entitled to fair treatment and getting the problem fixed in a timely manner. In many cases, the manufacturer will repurchase your vehicle, and may even have to pay civil penalties and or reimbursement of your expenses. It helps to understand your rights as a consumer, and the California Lemon Law expert is here to help you or someone you may know who is in this situation. If your vehicle is not functioning properly and is under warranty, you have rights under the law that you need to thoroughly understand. Call us today for a free, no charge consultation at 916-672-8443.

 

 

 

 

 

Chevrolet Cruze : Cruise Worthy ?

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This week, we round up what has turned out to be a fairly substantial number of complaints from owners of the Chevrolet Cruze.   If you are in the market for a compact sedan, you will no doubt come across this vehicle in your research.  The Chevrolet Cruze is marketed as a compact car for commuters,  boasting good fuel efficiency with its 1.4 / 1.6L engines, roomy interior, and comfortable ride.  It carries a relatively low asking price and therefore scores as a good seller in this particular class.  At a price point of $20k or less depending on features and dealer incentives, it’s no wonder this is a worthy contender in the compact class.

Recently, a number of folks are noticing ‘check engine’ lights coming on after only a few short miles driven.  Other complaints including rattles, water leaks from rain, loss of power / sluggish acceleration, and improper mixtures of fuel due to leaking into the oil pan (!) are just a few of the nightmarish incidents being reported.  Also, a common complaint is the huge blind spot that apparently exists, causing the driver unnecessary worry that a car in the adjacent lane is virtually invisible.  And in most of these cases, dealerships are a nightmare to deal with, according to those owners who are dealing with the problems.

If you own a Chevrolet Cruze and are experiencing problems while under warranty that the dealership cannot or will not fix, we are here to help you.  Contact the California Lemon Law Expert today for a free, no-cost assessment of your case.  Call us at 916-672-8443 and speak directly with a friendly, caring and knowledgeable attorney who will advise you on your case.  You will be glad you did !

Please remember :  if you have a vehicle AND it is under the manufacturer’s warranty, you are entitled to fair treatment and getting the problem fixed in a timely manner.  In many cases, the manufacturer will repurchase your vehicle, and may even have to pay civil penalties and or reimbursement of your expenses. It helps to understand your rights as a consumer, and the California Lemon Law expert is here to help you or someone you may know who is in this situation.  If your vehicle is not functioning properly and is under warranty, you have rights under the law that you need to thoroughly understand.

Our business is growing and our mission is simple : to educate you, fellow consumers, about the “Lemon Law”, and how it protects those who have found themselves stuck with that new car, truck, RV, motorcycle, etc, that just isn’t performing up to expectations.  Stay in the know, visit this site often and let us know if we can be of assistance. The initial consultation is free, and if you’re having a problem, it is well worth a few minutes of your time to understand your rights and how you can get the help you need.

 

 

April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month

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Hello !  This week, we’re going to focus on what we consider to be a vitally important topic that ALL of us, as drivers, need to be reminded of :  distracted driving and the dangers therein.

All of us face distractions when we drive.   Distractions these days are numerous and include flashy, brightly-lit electronic billboards, in-vehicle telematics / navigation systems, and of course, the most pesky distraction of all – our cell phones.  Have you been driving at night and been nearly ‘blinded’ by the brightness and intensity of some of the newer electronic billboards that are popping up on roadsides ? How about the distraction of the screen / telematics system on your own dashboard ?  Unfortunately, all of these ‘distractions’ can cause us to take our eyes off the road and to lose our ‘focus’ on the important task at hand – being safe and defensive drivers.

Of the many distractions we as drivers are facing, the cell phone probably presents the biggest risk.  Whether talking, texting, navigating, surfing, or snapping selfies (yep, we’ve actually seen it on the freeway !), the cell phone can cause major distractions, to the point where driving is no longer the focus of our attention.  That’s when problems can arise and accidents happen.  The risk of having a mishap increases dramatically when cell phones are used while driving.

The National Safety Council has a mission:  to eliminate preventable deaths at work, in homes and communities, and on the road through leadership, research, education and advocacy.  It is unfortunate to note that statistics show motor vehicle fatalities are up 6% from 2015.  Distractions such as those noted above are major contributors, and many are preventable.  This month is Distracted Driving Awareness Month and the Council provides many resources to help educate and remind us about the inherent dangers that distracted driving presents.  

Please, take a moment to reflect on the importance of the importance of staying focused while driving, and if you have teen drivers in your household, remind them to be safe and responsible behind the wheel.  It’s a positive message from which all of us benefit.

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Please remember :  if you have a vehicle AND it is under the manufacturer’s warranty, you are entitled to fair treatment and getting the problem fixed in a timely manner.  In many cases, the manufacturer will repurchase your vehicle, and may even have to pay civil penalties and or reimbursement of your expenses. It helps to understand your rights as a consumer, and the California Lemon Law expert is here to help you or someone you may know who is in this situation.  If your vehicle is not functioning properly and is under warranty, you have rights under the law that you need to thoroughly understand.

 

source:  The National Safety Council