Peterbilt recalls 35,671 trucks for threat of underhood fires

Peterbilt truck

PACCAR Inc. (NASDAQ: PCAR) is recalling 35,671 Peterbilt trucks built over six model years because an electrical short circuit in a battery cable could lead to an underhood fire.

Just 1% of the 365, 389, 567 and 579 vehicles from the 2015-2020 model years being recalled are suspected of having a positive battery jumper terminal cable that may be too long, allowing it to chafe against the left front suspension spring. 

The chafing can short circuit to the chassis ground and increase the risk of a vehicle underhood fire and crash, PACCAR told the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

On January 17, Peterbilt learned of a small fire under the hood near the left-hand side rail mounted jump-start terminals. The fire damage was localized to the jump-start terminal battery cable area. No injuries were reported. Following an engineering investigation, Peterbilt decided on February 27 to conduct a safety recall.

PACCAR will notify owners and dealers on May 1. Dealers will inspect the battery jumper terminal cables and replace them as necessary free of charge. The jump start terminal cables are shorter in length than the original cables. For certain option content an additional bracket is added to support the cables.

A production change was made on Sept. 30, 2019 to allow improved jump start terminal cable routings using shorter cable lengths. That resulted in increased clearance in areas around the front suspension components.