by Bob Beranek

A friend recently ran into an issue with a fully loaded 2014 Grand Cherokee with a rain sensor. He reported that after the new windshield was installed, the wiper swiped once every time the vehicle was started, and that when it rained the wiper did not change frequency and/or speed. His team had worked on several of these vehicles in the past and did not have a similar incident.

They took the vehicle to the dealer, where the dealer checked several on-lot vehicles and found that none of them had the same issue. The dealer contacted Chrysler Technical Services and discovered that the system needed resetting.

My friend told me by email, “In the scan tool there was an option asking if the RS had been removed or replaced. (By the way: I don’t think our auto glass tech unplugged it, rather he un-clipped it from the bracket on the windshield and left it hang.)  When ‘yes’ was selected the scan tool the system began resetting door locks, electro mirror, adaptive cruise and many other functions, including the ‘rain sensing windshield.’ After that was complete, the wipers performed normally.”

The charge for this service is about $50 to $75 per reset. The reset covers similarly-equipped vehicles from 2013 and up.

The unclear point in this story is that others have not had a similar problem when the glass was replaced. The tech in this case did not disconnect the rain sensor so interruption of the electrical circuit is not the cause.

My theory is that any Chrysler vehicle with multiple Advanced Driver Assist Systems (ADAS) included in its features, requires this reset/recalibration. I think that all ADAS circuits are interrelated and need rebooting. I would be interested to hear from those that have had a similar experience and how they handled it.

It seems that there is a door latch issue on Ford’s Fiesta, Fusion and MKZ models. Considering that we frequently replace door glasses in these vehicles and that broken tempered glass sometimes embeds itself in the door latch mechanism, it is best to know about this recall.

When contracted to do these vehicles’ door glasses, make sure to ask the owner if the recall was completed according to manufacturers’ instructions. It is best to ask the customer prior to doing the glass replacement so arrangements can be made to correct the problem if the recall was not completed. If the doors on these models fail to close properly or you witness a door latch issue during the pre-inspection, make sure you inform the owner of the recall and explain the options.

Report Receipt Date: April 24, 2015

NHTSA Campaign Number: 15V246000

Component(s): LATCHES/LOCKS/LINKAGES

Potential Number of Units Affected: 456,440

Vehicle Make, Model, Model Year(s)

  • FORD FIESTA 2011-2014
  • FORD FUSION 2013-2014
  • LINCOLN MKZ 2013-2014

Manufacturer: Ford Motor Co.

SUMMARY:

Ford Motor Co. notified the National Highway Traffic Administration (NHTSA) on April 23, 2015, that they are recalling certain model year 2013-2014 Ford Fusion and Lincoln MKZ vehicles manufactured July 1, 2012 to May 31, 2013, and 2012-2014 Fiesta vehicles manufactured February 1, 2012 to May 31, 2013. On April 30, 2015, Ford expanded the recall to cover an additional 119,567 vehicles, including certain model year 2011 Ford Fiestas manufactured from November 11, 2009 to May 31, 2013 and certain model year 2013 Ford Fusion and Lincoln MKZ vehicles manufactured from February 1, 2012 to June 30, 2012. A component within the door latches may break making the doors difficult to latch and/or leading the driver or a passenger to believe a door is securely closed when, in fact, it is not.

CONSEQUENCE:

A door that is not securely latched could open while the vehicle is in motion, increasing the risk of injury to a vehicle occupant.

REMEDY:

Ford will notify owners, and dealers will replace all four door latches with an improved part, free of charge. The recall is expected to begin June 1, 2015. Owners may contact Ford customer service at 1-866-436-7332. Ford’s number for this recall is 15S16.

NOTES:

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

I just got back from Glass Expo West™ in Irvine, Calif., where the Auto Glass Safety Council™ (AGSC) held its spring board and committee meetings. Every spring and fall the AGSC board and committees meet to discuss the AGRSS™ Standard, which they are responsible for maintaining, as well as other pressing issues that affect the industry. I am proud to be a board member, chairman of the AGSC Standards Committee and a member of the Education Committee, so it was a busy week.

The biggest issue, both in the committee meetings and at the bar afterward, was the Advanced Driver Assist Systems (ADAS). How should we handle the recalibration both practically in our daily work and in our AGRSS™ Standard? There were some passionate discussions based on the information brought to us by Mitch Becker of ABRA Collision and Glass and Glen Moses from Safelite. Both gentlemen brought some very interesting facts as well as their opinions, based on extensive research.

Anyone who follows this blog knows my feelings on the issue. Safety is paramount and no matter how anyone wants to paint it, it still comes down to delivering a safe vehicle back to the customer in a manner that is reasonable for business.

If you haven’t seen my previous posts, I said:

  • ADAS is a safety device;
  • Any ADAS cameras or equipment the technician removes or displaces during the course of an installation must be recalibrated by a certified calibration specialist, such as the vehicle dealer or an approved calibration professional, if such calibration is required by vehicle manufacturers’ specifications; and
  • If the calibration cannot be done to the vehicle manufacturer’s specifications by the glass technician, an appointment should be made with the appropriate recalibrating agency by the glass shop for the customer so any liability will be reduced to the shop owner.

My belief was that this would have protected both the customer and the glass shop from any issues arising from the ADAS.

Last week I discovered, unfortunately, that the issues aren’t that simple. Here are some more facts about the new ADAS systems that glass shops will need to address:

  • There are more and more vehicle manufacturers that are requiring OEM glass be used on vehicles equipped with ADAS systems. The glass part itself must meet the exact specifications of the system or it may perform abnormally due to curvature issues and tint.
  • Some dealers may not even calibrate the glass unless the glass is OEM so check this out with your local dealerships.
  • Many dealers across the U.S. don’t even know what an ADAS is or know how to deal with it.
  • The debate is still on whether the ADAS is a safety device due to the ability of the driver to bypass the system by turning it off. It was reported that even the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA) did not want to weigh in on this issue as yet.

This makes dealing with these systems very problematic. So problematic in fact, that the AGSC Standards Committee could not yet develop a directive or statement without absorbing and digesting all the information first.

We decided to review the information brought to our attention, research added information ourselves and come back this fall with our recommendations for the committee to debate. This technology is so new and so diverse that even the carmakers’ dealership system is unsure of the ramifications of calibration or recalibration. All we know is what is written in the service manuals of the vehicles, and all we can do at this time is to follow those recommendations.

However, there was one positive note on all this doom and gloom. General Motors does not require recalibration of their ADAS after windshield replacement because they designed it to be self-calibrating. The belief of some of the pundits in the room is that calibration of ADAS may become a moot point in the next decade due to standardization of the systems currently in use. Some believe that the ADAS will go the way of GM’s self-calibrating system rather than Europe’s system of constant calibration of electronic features.

We can only hope.