One of the biggest recalls of all time involves the Takata airbags. And here to give us some pointers, we have Chris Basso, from CarFax. Chris, welcome to Goss’ Garage.

CHRIS: Thanks for having me, Pat.

PAT: Alright, now the Takata airbag…well here we have an inflator of another brand of airbag. It’s similar; not the same thing as the Takata, but what’s happening is that there’s too much pressure that builds up inside of it when it goes off, and this metal is breaking into pieces and flying into the cabin of the car. So it’s pretty dangerous.  

CHRIS: It is, and it’s creating life threatening injuries, unfortunately. But, you know, as high profile as the Takata airbag recall has been, there are literally thousands of other recalls that have been issued that unfortunately have never been fixed that pose just as great a risk for people to be injured or worse. In fact our data shows that there’s 46 million cars that are on the road with an unfixed recall for things that can cause fires, crashes; other issues that cause the passengers of those vehicles as well as other people on the road, that put them in danger. So it’s really important for those people to get those cars fixed.

PAT: Alright, now, you have some kind of a program that helps people track this, right?

CHRIS: Yeah, it used to be that you had to wait for the manufacturer’s letter. It was the only way to get recall information, to find out if your car was recalled. But now there’s lots of people that are providing recall information for free. And one of the most popular is CarFax.

We’ve created a free app, called MyCarFax, that only uses your license plate to see if your car has a recall now, and in the future. So it’s as simple as plugging in your license plate once, and you’ll get recall notices on your mobile device if there’s a recall on it now or in the future. And in fact, for this Honda, we have a recall for a Takata airbag on it right now.

PAT: Ok. So that’s a good way to keep up with it. I wonder why so many people disregard the recalls. Because it can be deadly.

CHRIS: It can be. And unfortunately, it really comes down to…either they’ve discarded the notice or they just don’t have the time to get it fixed. But in most cases recalls can be fixed in a matter of hours. So it’s a simple way…it’s simple to get them fixed. And if you discarded the notice, there are other ways to get recall information; like the free MyCarFax app.  

PAT: Ok, plus the recalls are free.  

CHRIS: The recalls are free. It’s free to find it; it’s free to get it fixed. There really is no reason not to do it, especially if you can get that information on your mobile device that almost every one of us has now.

PAT: Ok Chris, thank you.

And if you have a question or comment, drop me a line, right here at MotorWeek.