Nationally, Toyota to get started on recall fix this week | PostIndependent.com
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Nationally, Toyota to get started on recall fix this week

John Gardner
Post Independent Staff
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
Toyota's planned fix for the sticking accelerator pedal is explained in this graphic.
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GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado – Relief is in sight for locals concerned with the recall of certain Toyota vehicles with a possible sticking accelerator pedal.

Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc. announced Tuesday morning that the company will begin fixing accelerator pedals in eight models included in the recall this week. However, Bighorn Toyota General Manager Steve Zeder said that he was uncertain as to when repairs would begin in Glenwood Springs.

“At this point in time, the details have not been communicated with us yet,” Zeder said. “It’s my hope that we will begin work on them as soon as possible.”



Toyota Motor Sales announced the recall of the vehicles reported to have potential problems with sticking accelerator pedals on Jan. 21. Five days later the company announced that it was temporarily suspending sales of the eight models until a remedy regarding a sticking accelerator pedal problem was determined.

Toyota announced it would recall approximately 2.3 million vehicles to correct the sticking accelerator pedals on specific Toyota Division models.



A statement on Toyota’s website confirms that the company has identified what it believes is the problem behind the sticking accelerator pedal.

The statement reads that the issue involves a friction device in the pedal which was designed to steady the pedal by adding resistance. The particular device includes a “shoe” that rubs against an adjoining surface during normal pedal operation. Toyota determined that over time, wear on the surface of the assembly may, “in some instances, begin to stick and release instead of operating smoothly,” the statement read.

To fix the solution, Toyota determined that placing a precision-cut steel reinforcement bar into the assembly will reduce the surface tension. The steel reinforcement will eliminate any excess friction that can cause the pedal to stick, the company says.

The auto maker is simultaneously recalling certain models to address another situation where, in some instances, floor mats have also been found to keep the accelerator pedal in a partially depressed position. The problems are separate but are being dealt with at the same time.

At a news conference Tuesday morning, Toyota said that the parts needed to fix the problem were being shipped to dealerships so the issue could be resolved. Some dealerships were expected to begin repairs by the end of the week. However, Zeder could only speculate as to when Bighorn Toyota would begin repairs.

“There is really no way to tell at this point in time,” Zeder said.

He urged locals with concerns to visit Toyota’s website for up-to-date information regarding the recall, and to call Bighorn Toyota if they still have questions.

Toyota has said that many dealers will work extended hours, with some service departments staying open 24-hours a day, to complete the recall work as quickly as possible, according to a release from Toyota Motor Sales’ website.

Some dealerships have added service technicians to help with the additional work. However, Zeder said that Bighorn has recently added a service technician, but that it had nothing to do with the recall.

“By coincidence, we do have a new tech starting next week,” Zeder said. “He was hired prior to this recall.”

Detailed information and answers to questions about issues related to this recall are available to customers at http://www.toyota.com/recall, and at the Toyota Customer Experience Center by calling 1 (800) 331-4331.

Toyota also reported an 12 percent decrease of Toyota division vehicle sales in January compared to the same month for 2009.

jgardner@postindependent.com


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