Mega Recall from Chrysler for Fires

AutoInformed.com on FCA Cummins Turbo Diesel Recall

The fire recall  was a long time coming – something NHTSA has criticized and fined FCA for in the past.

Chrysler continues to recall numerous vehicles for safety defects as the latest RAM truck safety recall affecting more than 440,000 cab-chassis vehicles with bad Cummins supplied water pumps. In the Ram pickup truck case, 2013- 2017 Ram 3500 models with the Cummins 6.7L Turbo diesel engine (Sales Code ETK) were built with either a Concentric water pump with a vent hole, or a non-Concentric water pump may encounter a water pump failure that may result in an engine compartment fire. Either way, due to lack of quality control the pumps are a fire hazard.

“Compromised water-pump function may activate a warning light in an affected vehicle’s instrument cluster. Customers are urged to consult their dealers whenever they observe warning lights,” said FCA.

Why So Long to Recall?

  • On June 16, 2016, through active field report monitoring, it was discovered that two Ram vehicles with Cummins 6.7L Turbo Diesel engines experienced fires which appeared to originate around the water pump.

  • On December 19, 2016, a returned engine from a fire related to the water pump failure was returned to the FCA US Quality Engineering Center and reviewed by FCA US engineering and Cummins representatives. Analysis revealed the origin to be like prior incidents related to water pump failure.
  • From January 20, 2017, through January 26, 2017, testing of the warranty returned parts was completed. No combustion occurred during testing, however temperatures were recorded at the water pump housing of 680˚ C. • From February 7, 2017, through July 21, 2017, the FCA US VSRC monitored field reports for additional inputs. • On August 7, 2017 testing was re-initiated to examine the warmer ambient summer conditions.
  • On August 10, 2017, the FCA US engineering team recreated the fire using a warranty return water pump at the FCA US Chrysler Proving Grounds, demonstrating the water pump can produce sustained combustion.
  • On September 5, 2017, FCA US determined, through the Vehicle Regulations Committee, to conduct a voluntary safety recall of the affected vehicles.
  • On December 19, 2016, a returned engine from a fire related to the water pump failure was returned to the FCA US Quality Engineering Center and reviewed by FCA US engineering and Cummins representatives. Analysis revealed the origin to be like prior incidents related to water pump failure.
  • From January 20, 2017, through January 26, 2017, testing of the warranty returned parts was completed. No combustion occurred during testing, however temperatures were recorded at the water pump housing of 680˚ C.
  • From February 7, 2017, through July 21, 2017, the FCA US VSRC monitored field reports for additional inputs. • On August 7, 2017 testing was re-initiated to examine the warmer ambient summer conditions.
  • On August 10, 2017, the FCA US engineering team recreated the fire using a warranty return water pump at the FCA US Chrysler Proving Grounds, demonstrating the water pump can produce sustained combustion.
  • On September 5, 2017, FCA US determined, through the Vehicle Regulations Committee, to conduct a voluntary safety recall – as required by U.S> law – of the affected vehicles.

 

 

 

 

 

 

About Kenneth Zino

Ken Zino is an auto industry veteran with global experience in print, broadcast and electronic media. He has auto testing, marketing, public relations and communications expertise garnered while working in Asia, Europe and the U.S.
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