Consumer Reports: How to check if your car is under recall

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- You may have heard about the largest auto recall in history, the defective Takata airbag, affecting 37 million vehicles in the United States.

But there are actually hundreds of recalls issued each year, even for older cars potentially placing you and others on the road at risk. In a partnership with Consumer Reports, 7 On Your Side's Michael Finney reveals how to find out if your car is on the list and what to do about it.

In the video above, you will see a few cars. What do these cars have in common? All are under recall.

But did you know that a whopping one in every four recalled vehicles on the road have not been fixed? "It's staggering when you think that there are millions of car owners out there who may not even realize their vehicles need repair," said Jon Linkov, Consumer Reports Auto Editor.

Four months ago, Ram recalled 1.5 million trucks due to a faulty gear shifter, resulting in several injuries. The recall affected models as far back as 2009.

BMW recently recalled nearly 700,000 cars, some built in 2006, for faulty wiring which could potentially result in a fire.

And Toyota recalled more than 300,000 mini-vans, some from as far back as 2005, for a problem with the shifting lever, increasing the risk of a crash. And these are just a few examples. "We can't emphasize enough how important it is for car owners to check whether their vehicle has been recalled," said Linkov.

To help protect you and your family, Consumer Reports has created a car recall tracker. Sign up for a basic membership, so you can check out their Car Recall Tracker. Then, enter your vehicle's year, make, and model.

You will get a list of recalls and information on how to get your car fixed.

Remember that any safety-related repair work should be done free of charge by an authorized dealer.

Getting your vehicle fixed makes the roads safer for everyone.

Click here to find out if your car is under recall.

Click here for a look at more stories by Michael Finney and 7 On Your Side.

Written and produced by Justin Mendoza

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