The feds are launching an investigation into potential carbon monoxide leaks in Ford Explorer cabins. If this sounds familiar that’s because it is. This isn’t the first investigation into the possible problem.
Dozens of drivers report smelling exhaust fumes inside their cabins in certain circumstances. According to Reuters, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration opened another investigation Friday into those complaints. This is the same issue they looked into back in 2014.
The newest investigation involves 2011-2015 Ford Explorer models. The agency says it’s based on 154 reports of “occupants smelling exhaust odors in the occupant compartment,” and that some of the vehicle owners “expressed concerns about exposure to carbon monoxide.” Owners report smelling the fumes when the SUV is at full throttle such as climbing steep hills, or when the air-conditioning system is recirculating air into the cabin.
One crash is linked to the potential hazard, but no injuries.
“We will cooperate with NHTSA on this investigation as we always do,” a Ford spokeswoman said.
According to a June 2014 report in the Wall Street Journal, the NHTSA looked into 20 complaints of carbon monoxide in 2011-2014 Explorer models.
Automotive News also reports Ford previously issued bulletins about the issue to dealers twice, once in December 2012 and a second time in July 2014. The “technical service bulletins” gave dealers’ repair shops instructions on how to fix the potential problem.
The new investigation doesn’t necessarily mean it will lead to a recall. If it does, there’s no tally right now of how many vehicles it might include.