Nissan is recalling 807,376 Sentra Cars for failed brake light and starting problems. In the required NHTSA filing, Nissan said this safety defect is unique to model year 2016-2019 Sentra vehicles because a clevis pin grease that uses a high concentration of silicon, and a bulb system that uses a high current switch are close to one another. No other Nissan or Infiniti vehicles share this specific combination of factors and are unaffected by the issue, Nissan claims.
The stop lamp switch may become contaminated with off-gassing from silicon- based grease used in surrounding components (HVAC and brake booster clevis pin) in close proximity. Oxidation may occur at the switch contact surface due to electric arcing, resulting in silicon dioxide build-up. This build-up may lead open circuits and an inoperative stop lamp switch.
“The customer may notice a malfunction indicator light (MIL) ON, the rear stop lamps may not illuminate and/or the engine may not start. Rear stop lamps not illuminating could potentially increase the risk of a rear end crash,” Nissan said.
An estimated 20% of all Sentra models have the defect. Nissan will notify owners, and dealers will replace the brake light switch and install a protective grommet, free of charge as required by U.S. regulations.
However, the so-called remedy parts are not expected to become available until the Fall 2021. Interim notices informing owners of the safety risk are expected to be mailed beginning April 7, 2021. Owners will receive a second notice when the remedy becomes available. Owners may contact Nissan customer service at 1-800867-7769. Nissan’s number for this recall is PM971.