A recall has been announced for more than 200,000 Jeep Liberty SUVs from the 2004 and 2005 model years. The recall is due to road salts used in particular states, which can cause the rear wheel control arms to corrode and break.
De-icer linked to corrosion since 2011
In April of 2011, according to MSNBC, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration opened an investigation into nine claims the agency had received regarding the lower control arms on the rear wheels of Jeep Liberty models from the 2004 and 2005 model years. The agency had been told that the control arms could shear off unexpectedly.
By September of 2011, the NHTSA had amended it to an engineering analysis, as more complaints of the problem had been logged. Eventually, the problem was traced to road salts, the salts used to de-ice roads in winter conditions.
Chrysler, parent company of Jeep and Dodge and itself part of Fiat SPA, has announced a recall for 2004 and 2005 model year Jeep Liberty SUVs in order to correct the corrosion issue with the rear lower control arms.
There are, according to USA Today, 209,724 units subject to the recall, though the recall only extends to “salt belt” states, or states that use such salts because of winter conditions that require them. The recall only extends to Liberty SUVs in Delaware, Connecticut, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Montana, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Maryland, New Hampshire, New York, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Wisconsin, West Virgina and Washington, D.C.
All units subject to the recall were manufactured between July 3, 2003, and July 14, 2005. Owners can find out their vehicle’s manufacture date by looking at the plate bearing the Vehicle Identification Number located in the driver’s side door frame.
Jeep has got the medicine
Chrysler, according to Inside Line, is aware of 84 incidents involving the rear lower control arms breaking because of corrosion, but no car accidents or injuries were caused as a result of the defect.
Chrysler will start notifying owners around the end of April, when the recall is scheduled to begin. Owners will be directed to take their Liberty SUV to the nearest Chrysler or Jeep dealership, where the vehicle will be fitted with new control arms.
In the meantime, if owners are still concerned and would like more information, they can contact Chrysler directly through their customer service hotline. The phone number is 1-800-853-1403.