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Hyundai and KIA Recall Nearly 600,000 Vehicles over Fire Risks

Hyundai recommends parking these vehicles outside.

2023 Hyundai Santa Fe HEV on a dirt road.

We have bad news if you’re the proud owner of select Hyundai or KIA vehicles. The two companies have issued a recall on over a half million cars, instructing owners to park outside due to a tow hitch harness problem that could lead to vehicles catching fire.

According to one recall notice shared by the NHTSA, the tow hitch harness on affected vehicles could catch fire regardless of the vehicle’s use. Meaning there’s a fire risk while driving or while parked and turned off.

The recall covers the Hyundai Sante Fe, Hyundai Santa Cruz, and the KIA Carnival minivan. More specifically, if you own one of the following vehicles with a tow hitch harness or receiver, you’ll want to watch for the official recall and get it fixed ASAP.

  • 2019-2023 Hyundai Santa Fe
  • 2021-2023 Hyundai Santa Fe HEV
  • 2022-2023 Hyundai Santa Fe Plug-in HEV
  • 2022-2023 Hyundai Santa Cruz
  • 2022-2023 Kia Carnival

Apparently, water from driving (or a car wash) can get into a PBC circuit board on the hitch and cause a short, which could cause heat damage or potentially catch fire. The Korean automaker says it received several reports of heat damage but only one fire regarding the recall.

Interestingly enough, this looks like nothing more than a simple wiring problem. For what it’s worth, Hyundai issued a similar recall on another vehicle a few years ago. The official recall notice suggests that owners must take affected vehicles to a dealership for inspection, a temporary fix, or a complete replacement.

Hyundai says it’ll remove the fuse and tow hitch module on vehicles to prevent a short circuit. Then, later, replace it with an updated connector harness and a new 15A fuse free of charge. The two automakers will begin alerting owners no later than May 16 with instructions to bring their vehicles to a dealership for a fix.

Anyone with one of these vehicles should park it outside and away from any buildings or structures. Then, please take it to a nearby dealership as soon as possible.

via Lifehacker

Cory Gunther Cory Gunther
Cory Gunther has been writing about phones, Android, cars, and technology in general for over a decade. He's a staff writer for Review Geek covering roundups, EVs, and news. He's previously written for GottaBeMobile, SlashGear, AndroidCentral, and InputMag, and he's written over 9,000 articles. Read Full Bio »