More than 30 million vehicles in the United States, made by 10 different automakers, have been recalled to replace frontal airbags on the driver’s side or passenger’s side (or both). The airbags, made by major parts supplier Takata, were mostly installed in cars from model year 2002 through 2008. Some of those airbags could deploy explosively, injuring or even killing car occupants.
The heart of the problem is the airbag’s inflator, a metal cartridge loaded with propellant wafers, that, in a few cases, has ignited with explosive force. If the inflator housing ruptures in a crash, metal shards from the airbag can be sprayed throughout the passenger cabin—a potentially disastrous outcome from a well-meaning but poorly designed mechanism.
Determining which of Takata’s several inflator designs is implicated has been tough for Takata, the automakers, and independent investigators to establish. It now appears there are multiple causes, but, mostly, if the propellant wafers break down, due to high humidity or another cause, the propellant burns too rapidly, creating an explosion.
How can you check to see if your Honda Civic is affected? The quickest way to go is to visit the Honda recall page, have your vin number or model and year to make sure you know everything there is to know about recalls and your car, or you can go to safercar.gov/rs/takata as well.
For follow-up questions, come in to Barbour Hendrick Honda today and talk with one of our representatives!