Recalls Campaign Consumer Q&A 

  1. What does NHTSA want me to do?

    Find out if your vehicle is under a recall by using our VIN Look-Up tool on Safecar.gov at least twice a year. And if your car is under a recall, get it fixed as soon as possible — Safe Cars Save Lives.

  2. What is a VIN and where do I find it?

    A VIN is a vehicle identification number. Look on the lower left of your car’s windshield, on the driver’s side. You should be able to find your 17-digit VIN there. Your VIN is also located on your car’s registration card, and it may be shown on your insurance card.

    A VIN is a vehicle identification number. Look on the lower left of your car’s windshield, on the driver’s side. You should be able to find your 17-digit VIN there. Your VIN is also located on your car’s registration card, and it may be shown on your insurance card.

  3. How often should I check my VIN for a recall?

    Use NHTSA’s VIN Look-Up tool on SaferCar.gov regularly to see if your vehicle is under a recall; at least twice a year. To remember to check, time it with Daylight Saving Time – every November when setting clocks back and every March when setting clocks forward.

    You can click here to watch a step-by-step video on how to check your VIN.

  4. Why should I act when I get a recall notice or use the VIN Look-Up tool and see that my vehicle has been recalled?

    A recall means that your vehicle’s manufacturer or NHTSA have determined that there is a defect in your vehicle that represents a risk to your safety, or that the vehicle doesn’t meet basic Federal safety regulations that all vehicles sold in the United States must meet.

    It could be a defect that causes you to lose control of your car, a defect that causes safety features such as air bags or seat belts to fail their job of protecting you, or a violation of the standards for how well your vehicle should protect you and your family in a crash. These are not problems to be taken lightly – they threaten your safety and the safety of everyone in your vehicle, and even those on the road beside you.

  5. Will I have to pay for my recall to get fixed?

    All recall repairs are free. If your vehicle is recalled, please call your local dealer as soon as possible to make an appointment for a free remedy. Click here to see a video on how recalls work.

  6. Where do I get more information about my vehicle?

    Consumers can find out if their specific vehicle is under a recall by using our VIN Look-Up tool at www.safercar.gov/checkforrecalls and sign-up for recall alerts on the website to get e-mails about future recalls.

    When cars are recalled in the United States, manufacturers provide the affected VINs to be loaded into the NHTSA database so consumers can search for open recalls. Owners are also contacted directly by the manufacturers through the mail using a specially marked envelope to distinguish it from junk mail. Click here to watch our recall video.