Ford is recalling over 634,000 SUVs over fuel leaks and fire hazards

DEARBORN, Mich. (AP) — Ford Motor Co. is recalling more than 634,000 SUVs worldwide because a cracked fuel injector can spill fuel or leak fumes onto a hot engine and cause fires.

The recall affects the Bronco Sport and Escape SUVs from model years 2020 to 2023. All have 1.5-liter three-cylinder engines.

The Dearborn, Michigan automaker said Thursday it did not recommend owners stop driving the vehicles or park them outdoors because fires are rare and generally don’t happen when the engines are off.

But Ford said it had received 20 reports of fires, including three that ignited nearby buildings. The company also said it had four claims for fires that were noticed less than five minutes after the engines were shut off. Ford also has four non-burn claims and 43 legal claims attributed to the problem.

Repairs aren’t yet available, but once they are, owners should schedule service with a preferred dealer, Jim Azzouz, executive director of customer experience, said in a statement. Owners will be notified by letter starting December 19th.

Owners can bring their SUVs to the dealership and receive a free loaner car, or they can have free pickup and delivery.

Dealers will check the injectors and replace them if necessary. Ford also says it’s extending warranties to cover cracked fuel injectors for up to 15 years.

Dealers will update vehicles’ engine control software to detect a broken injector. Drivers will receive a dashboard message to receive the service. Also, if there is a drop in pressure in the injectors, engine power is shut off to minimize the risk and get drivers to a safe place to stop and call for service, Ford said.

They also install a tube to drain fuel out of the cylinder head and away from hot surfaces.

Ford said it won’t replace injectors because the failure rate that causes leaks is low, an estimated 0.38% for 2020 models and 0.22% for 2021-2022 models. The tariff is for 15 years or 150,000 miles (240,000 kilometers). Ford is recalling over 634,000 SUVs over fuel leaks and fire hazards

Dais Johnston

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