Hyundai, Kia Issue Recall on 500,000 Cars in U.S. That Could Spontaneously Catch Fire

by Madison Miller

There are many things people look for in a car — an eye-catching color, new user technology, a little rear camera, certain safety features, good gas mileage, etc. It’s safe to say no one is looking to have their car randomly burst into a fit of flames. We leave that in the science-fiction world.

Now, however, this is a very real possibility for 500,000 people who own certain Hyundai and Kia cars.

These companies have recalled all these vehicles after realizing that the engines could spontaneously catch on fire at any moment. So, what is it that would cause a fire? Apparently, there is an electrical component within the anti-lock braking system that has the tendency to short circuit. The scariest part is that this could also happen when you’re not even driving the vehicle.

According to Business Insider, as a result, Hyundai and Kia are telling people to make sure to park their vehicles in certain spaces. This means they shouldn’t park in their garage, near buildings, or in any other indoor spaces. In the case the car does set on fire, this would at least ensure nothing else erupts into flames surrounding the car.

Hyundai is recalling the most cars with a total of 357,830. Kia has far less with 126,747 vehicles on the recall list. Here’s what cars you need to worry about randomly bursting into flames in the driveway.

The 2014-2016 Kia Sportage SUVs and the 2016-2018 Kia K900 sedans both got recalled on February 2. As for Hyundai, the recall includes the 2016-2018 Hyundai Santa Fe, the 2019 Santa Fe XL, the 2014-2015 Tucson SUVs, and the 2017-2018 Hyundai Sante Fe.

Steps to Take as a Hyundai and Kia Owner

As an owner of this vehicle, there are a few steps you should take. Owners can check the NHTSA’s recall website in order to verify if their vehicle falls under the recall or not. You could also call NHTSA’s Vehicle Safety Hotline, enter the car’s 17-digit ID number, and this will also provide the needed safety information.

Beyond that, you will also shortly receive something in the mail. “Kia and Hyundai will notify owners by mail with instructions to bring their vehicles to a Kia or Hyundai dealer for a free repair. Dealers will install a fuse designed to mitigate the risk of fire,” NHTSA said, according to the news outlet. These letters won’t be mailed out until March 31 and April 5, however.

According to WSOC, a family in North Carolina reported that their vehicle randomly caught on fire. Kathy Basternak owns a 2022 Kia Sportage. Her husband used it for the day and was on the interstate when he noticed smoke coming from under the hood. Then, the whole car had quickly been engulfed in flames. The car had no previous accidents.

This specific model is not listed under the current Kia recall, so the issue has to come from something else within the vehicle.