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Kia recalls 229,000 Sorento, Sedona models for fire risk

An ABS module may short circuit and cause a fire, even if the car's turned off.

2009 Kia Sorento

Yeah, a sudden fire is no good.

Kia

Following a sizable recall for the Hyundai Elantra, the carmaker's Korean cousin Kia will now face a recall for an identical fire risk.

In documents filed with the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration on Feb. 14, Kia named an antilock brake module as the culprit behind the potential for a fire to start in certain 2007-2009 Sorento crossovers and 2006-2010 Sedona minivans.

According to the filing, a short circuit could occur in the module and spark a fire even if the car isn't running. The ABS module is constantly powered, which explains the fire risk even when the engine is off.

Kia said moisture entering the module causes the problem over time, as Hyundai did in its recall documents for the Elantra. For owners, there won't be any prior warning to the issue.

Owners shouldn't worry too much, however, because the company already has a fix for the problem. Technicians will install a relay in the main junction box to neutralize any short circuit in the ABS module. All the work will be carried out free of charge.

Kia's recall will begin on April 10 with notices mailing out to owners. If there happens to be an affected Elantra also in the garage, those notices will go out starting April 3.

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