Ford said it had identified a fix for owners affected by an under bonnet fire recall affecting some 2021 Expedition and Lincoln Navigator SUVs.
“The company has communicated repair procedures to dealers and is working quickly to make parts available as soon as possible,” the automaker said in a statement.
“Ford is still advising customers to park their vehicles outside and away from structures until the dealer services their vehicle for this recall action. Vehicles may pose a risk of under hood fire, including while the vehicle is parked and off.”
Dealers will first inspect the battery junction box for melting damage, and if so, will replace the entire component. They will then remove the engine fan ground wire from the battery junction box in affected vehicles with an 800-watt cooling fan system, or about one third of the recalled vehicles. This repair can be done immediately. For the remaining affected vehicles with a 700-watt cooling fan system, the repair is the same, except for the installation of an auxiliary box with a wire jumper. Parts for this repair are expected to be available starting early in September. Customers are being notified via the FordPass app with follow up communication to customers of vehicles with 700 watt systems when parts are available.
Ford said it had received 21 reports of under bonnet fires including five since the original recall filing in May – with 18 incidents affecting vehicles owned by rental companies. The automaker is expanding the number of SUVs recalled to include 66,221 Expedition and Navigator SUVs in the US built between 27 July, 2020 and 31 August, 2021 “based on further analysis of the causes for the fires”.
Ford added it believed the cause of these vehicle fires could be traced to a change in manufacturing location by a supplier during the Covid-19 pandemic. Printed circuit boards produced at this facility are uniquely susceptible to a high current short and were supplied to the automaker and installed in Expedition and Navigator SUVs produced during the recall window.
Ford added it had not issued instructions to stop driving vehicles under this recall and was not aware of any accidents related to this issue. The company was aware of one reported injury.