Tips on how to replace your car's floor mats

The accelerator pedal, right, in a 2010 Toyota Camry is seen on the show room floor of Bobby Rahal Toyota in Mechanicsburg, Pa., Wednesday, Nov. 25, 2009. Toyota Motor Corp. said Wednesday it will replace accelerator pedals on about 4 million recalled vehicles in the United States because the pedals can get stuck in the floor mats. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

December 28, 2009 6:16:48 PM PST
A recent recall from Toyota has focused concern about the floor mats in many vehicles. The recall applies only to Toyota vehicles, but the precautions being urged apply to us all.

Toyota recalled four million floor mats after a fatal accident in the San Diego area killed four people.

The car maker blamed the accident on the rubber floor mat which the company said got caught on the gas pedal and sent the car speeding out of control.

All car owners should check that their floor mats are properly secured and not inching forward.

"There are little grommets in the floor mat and hooks in the floor of the car, and the hooks have to be engaged, and that way, the mat cannot move," Wade Hoyt, Toyota spokesperson said.

Properly fitting floor mats come with each new Toyota, but the company says they are not always replaced correctly.

"If people take the mats out to clean them, or if a car wash does it, and they just toss them back in and don't hook them up, then they can slide forward," Hoyt said.

If you buy your own floor mats, be sure they are designed for your car's make and model.

It should be noted that some consumer advocates believe the sudden acceleration problem should not be blamed on the floor mats, but a larger issue with the car's electrical system. Toyota has since expanded its recall to include gas pedals on 3.8 million vehicles.