Joined: 10 Sep 2006
| Posted: Tue Sep 16, 2008 8:06 am Post subject: valve stem recall
|Recall of faulty tire valve stems expanded
The recall of millions of faulty tire valve stems from China we wrote about last week has been expanded.
The rubber replacement valve stems in question may crack prematurely and cause tires to lose air quickly. At high speeds such rapid deflation can cause a serious crash.
Tire accessory distributor Tech International of Johnstown, Ohio, originally recalled model TR-413, which was manufactured for Dill Air Control Products of Oxford, N.C. by Topseal Shanghai Auto-Parts Co. Ltd. in China. The company said at that time the recall involved as many as six million valve stems.
But Tech International has now expanded the recall to include five additional models—TR-413CH, TR-414, TR-415, TR-418 and TR-423—manufactured between August 2006 and November 2006. Tech Int'l did not say how many of those additional models of valve stems it has distributed. Dill said earlier that it had shipped as many as 30 million of the TR-413 valve stems in the North American market.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration opened an investigation of the valve stems on May 15.
Most consumers will have a have a hard time figuring out with any certainty if they have any of the defective valve stems on their tires, however. That's because once a valve stems is installed, the only way to check to see if it is one of the suspected models is to dismount the tire from the wheel and inspect if from the inside.
Eugene Petersen, program leader for tire testing at Consumer Reports, says motorists should conduct a visual inspection of their valve stems to check for cracks. To do this, he says, remove the hubcap (if there is one) and move the top of the stem around, checking for any sign of cracks in the base of the stem where it meets the wheel.
Dill has posted photos online of what consumers should look for when they inspect valve stems.