In an effort to save money, many small businesses purchase used vehicles. Let the buyer beware.
A spring study conducted by CARFAX (www.carfax.com), the leading provider of vehicle history information, urges buyers of used vehicles to do their homework. The surprising finding? In 2011, there were more than 2.7 million used vehicles for sale online with open safety recall notices that were never addressed. These unrepaired issues are potentially hazardous for used car buyers and other vehicles sharing the road.
Leading the nation in the highest number of vehicles for sale with open recalls was California, closely followed by Florida and Texas. All three states had over 100,000 used vehicles for sale with unresolved safety recall notices.
Vehicle manufacturers often issue recall notices, both minor and serious, to vehicle owners. These notices address unsafe, hazardous, or defective equipment issues involving particular makes and models. To encourage resolution of these potentially dangerous issues, recall items are repaired free of charge and the work is often completed at a dealership.
While vehicle manufacturers attempt to contact vehicle owners through available records, this is not always possible, and new owners may be unaware that their vehicle may be under a safety recall until it results in an injury or accident. Currently, vehicle manufacturers are working to improve safety recall notifications. Several government agencies have also come together to create a website (http://www.recalls.gov/) that allows consumers to check for safety recalls on their vehicle by searching the VIN, vehicle make, or equipment type.