Fire Risk: GM Recalls 160,000 Canadian Pickups, No News on U.S. Models

Matt Posky
by Matt Posky

General Motors is issuing a recall on select Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra pickups, including HD models. According to Transport Canada, trucks equipped with a power sliding rear window could have a defroster circuit that can melt itself or, in rare instances, catch fire.

As no fix currently exists, GM is asking owners to bring their vehicles into the dealership so that the fuse for the rear defroster can be disconnected while it works on finding a better solution. The recall encompasses 159,240 trucks from the 2014-2019 model years.

While one would presume that U.S. vehicles would be similarly affected, no such recall exists within the United States ⁠— not yet. GM spokesman Daniel Flores told Automotive News that the manufacturer was actively investigating U.S. models, noting that reports of fires were uncommon.

“When investigated, GM has found evidence of smoke and localized melting conditions, but no fire propagation,”Flores said. “Further, the rate of occurrence in the Canadian vehicle population, given the climates and usage patterns, is significantly higher than the rate of occurrence in the U.S.”

While it’s true that Canada is closer to the Arctic Circle, the Northern United States still spends a significant portion of every year defrosting windows and nobody wants to smell melting plastic while they’re driving —temperate climate, or not. Americans also buy a hell of a lot more pickup trucks. The United States purchases almost as many Silverados per month as Canada does in an entire year.

GM’s planning on notifying its Canadian customers via mail with a subsequent notice on how to proceed once a fix has been developed. We’ll keep you posted on the U.S. front.

[Image: General Motors]

Matt Posky
Matt Posky

A staunch consumer advocate tracking industry trends and regulation. Before joining TTAC, Matt spent a decade working for marketing and research firms based in NYC. Clients included several of the world’s largest automakers, global tire brands, and aftermarket part suppliers. Dissatisfied with the corporate world and resentful of having to wear suits everyday, he pivoted to writing about cars. Since then, that man has become an ardent supporter of the right-to-repair movement, been interviewed on the auto industry by national radio broadcasts, driven more rental cars than anyone ever should, participated in amateur rallying events, and received the requisite minimum training as sanctioned by the SCCA. Handy with a wrench, Matt grew up surrounded by Detroit auto workers and managed to get a pizza delivery job before he was legally eligible. He later found himself driving box trucks through Manhattan, guaranteeing future sympathy for actual truckers. He continues to conduct research pertaining to the automotive sector as an independent contractor and has since moved back to his native Michigan, closer to where the cars are born. A contrarian, Matt claims to prefer understeer — stating that front and all-wheel drive vehicles cater best to his driving style.

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  • CKNSLS Sierra SLT CKNSLS Sierra SLT on Jul 15, 2019

    Wow! Some of the characters on this website are unbelievable. There are guys on here who are car guys...then there are others that take EVERY OPPORTUNITY to bash a manufacturer or make a thread political. I really wish there was some heavy handed moderation so most this non-sense would be deleted and those guys would find somewhere else to go. Unbelievable....

    • See 2 previous
    • Highdesertcat Highdesertcat on Jul 15, 2019

      @FreedMike Yeah? You'd never know it from this board. And THOSE Canadian Rights must pertain only to Canadian citizens because ttac's censors limit foreigners' rights to express themselves in their comments. To wit: DW et al. There's no way to justify any #DoubleStandard (I'm NOT saying DW is right in his ranting and raging. I am saying that DW does not have the Right to express himself under freedom of speech on this board.)

  • DeadWeight DeadWeight on Jul 16, 2019

    This place (TTAC) is dying for want of passion, excitement, free debate, and yes...as a result of the (here it comes...daring I) "snowflake" sensitivities amongst some of the readers/commenters, and obviously, management (lily white, overly polite?, Hosers from the Great White North (I actually love much about Canada and Canadians, but their qualities of just taking the sh!t their government throws at them whilst rolling over, like well-broken sled dogs, and their inclination to freak out over the wrong flavor-of-the-day words - the movies Blazing Saddles and Airplane must be treated like porn in Canada, Eh? - are not among those admirable things I love). All my points about China benefiting like no other nation in history from forced technology transfers (e.g. 1 of MANY - forcing foreign companies to take on SOE Chinese JV Partner in order to do biz in China and have any access to China's domestic market to sell their wares, enabling outright theft of proprietary technology in a context where's there no legal recourse in China's "judicial system", etc etc etc) are spot on. I could spend an hour writing a min-dissertation on how China has essentially obtained an amount of advanced technology in the span of MAYBE 25 years that they, nor any other nation in history, would have been able to gain in 100 years, or arguably ever, really, through outright theft, but of people aren't already aware of this fact, what's the point? That companies like GM (Guangzhou Motors) are among the biggest "look-the-other-way" companies in this regard, based on short term corporate incompetence at its highest levels, is the salt in the wound for me, and whether I or anyone else here likes/dislikes or agrees with some or most of what people like Peter Thiel have to say in general, he was spot on today in calling out Google for betraying not only western, democratic values at their core root by ceding to all of China's censorship demands, but for literally calling Google's seditious entity (in the same manner GM is). But oh my, I put a stereotyped phonetic on some common mis-pronunciations of English words by Chinese-native speakers, AND THE PLACE FREAKS OUT (most Americans nor westerners have no clue how xenophobic and maliciously prejudiced Chinese are towards Americans and westerners - it is on 20x fold-scale comparatively speaking from their direction). China is on an inevitable collision course with the US and the west, in general; our fundamental value paradigms are very misaligned and competition for resources is the kicker. Now that they've stolen 100+ years of advanced technology transfers at no cost or adverse consequence whatsoever, their hand has been strengthened in a way thr0at the former USSR could only have dreamed about in their most fantastical visions. Walls out, Balls out. If you can't/won't/refuse to acknowledge these facts, that are historical and ongoing in real time, you're part of the problem in this hotly brewing crisis that's only accelerating at a rapid clip. Reach down, and make sure you got a respectable swinging d!ck and two respectable balls, ladies, if you see this ongoing red-alert crisis in its severity and significance for what it is, and in now it literally represents an existential crisis to our most fundamental values in the west, and our very fundamental way of living, and join the good fight before it's too late. BUT I GUESS I'll TRY NOT TO OFFEND ANYONE BY ENGAGING IN THE MALICIOUS, BRUTAL, SAVAGE ACT OF TOSSING OUT CHINGRISH MIS-PRONUNCIATIONS! (Knowing how Machiavellian the Chinese are in their aspirations, what's the point, anyways - they literally laugh at our PC and delicate sensitivities - and are seeing their you,ultimate goals as a cakewalk at this point).

    • Avanti! Avanti! on Jul 17, 2019

      You see, a ton of the points you made in this post are absolutely reasonable (and many I believe are both troubling and true) and you’ve just enriched the thread by making them. Why then is it necessary to mock Chinese accents? It’s one thing to say what you believe is true no matter who gets offended by it - and that’s fair enough; we probably need a little more of that. It’s another thing all together to try to say it in a nasty and offensive way on purpose. And what’s the point of that? People just tune you out and the valuable point you’re making isn’t even addressed. So why do it?

  • AZFelix 2015 Sonata Limited72k when purchased, 176k miles currentlyI perform all maintenance and repairs except for alignment, tire mounting, tire patching, and glass work (tint and passenger left due to rock hit). Most parts purchased through rockauto.com.Maintenance and repairs during three years of ownership:Front rotors and all brake pads upgraded shortly after purchase.Preparing for 17th oil change (full synthetic plus filter c.$50), one PCV valve.Timing & accessory belts, belt tensioner.Coolant full flush and change.Fibrous plastic material engine under tray replaced by aftermarket solid plastic piece $110.One set of tires (c.$500 +installation) plus two replacements and a number of patches due to nails, etc. Second set coming soon.Hood struts $30.Front struts, rear shocks, plus sway bar links, front ball joints, tie rod ends, right CV axle (large rock on freeway damaged it and I took the opportunity to redo the rest of items on this list).Battery c.$260.Two sets of spark plugs @ $50/set.Three sets of cabin and engine filters.Valve cover gasket (next week).Averages out to c.$1400 per year for the past three years. Minor driver seat bolster wear, front rock chips, and assorted dents & dings but otherwise looks and drives very well.
  • 3-On-The-Tree 2014 Ford F150 Ecoboost 3.5L. By 80,000mi I had to have the rear main oil seal replaced twice. Driver side turbo leaking had to have all hoses replaced. Passenger side turbo had to be completely replaced. Engine timing chain front cover leak had to be replaced. Transmission front pump leak had to be removed and replaced. Ford renewed my faith in Extended warranty’s because luckily I had one and used it to the fullest. Sold that truck on caravan and got me a 2021 Tundra Crewmax 4x4. Not a fan of turbos and I will never own a Ford again much less cars with turbos to include newer Toyotas. And I’m a Toyota guy.
  • Duke Woolworth Weight 4800# as I recall.
  • Kwik_Shift_Pro4X '19 Nissan Frontier @78000 miles has been oil changes ( eng/ diffs/ tranny/ transfer). Still on original brakes and second set of tires.
  • ChristianWimmer I have a 2018 Mercedes A250 with almost 80,000 km on the clock and a vintage ‘89 Mercedes 500SL R129 with almost 300,000 km.The A250 has had zero issues but the yearly servicing costs are typically expensive from this brand - as expected. Basic yearly service costs around 400 Euros whereas a more comprehensive servicing with new brake pads, spark plugs plus TÜV etc. is in the 1000+ Euro region.The 500SL servicing costs were expensive when it was serviced at a Benz dealer, but they won’t touch this classic anymore. I have it serviced by a mechanic from another Benz dealership who also owns an R129 300SL-24 and he’ll do basic maintenance on it for a mere 150 Euros. I only drive the 500SL about 2000 km a year so running costs are low although the fuel costs are insane here. The 500SL has had two previous owners with full service history. It’s been a reliable car according to the records. The roof folding mechanism needs so adjusting and oiling from time to time but that’s normal.
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