By David Undercoffler
9:00 AM PST, January 3, 2013
Subaru on Thursday announced that it was recalling 633,842 vehicles to check for a problem with a fuse in a puddle light that could short-circuit and lead to a fire.
The move affects Subaru Legacy and Outbacks made in 2010 and 2011, Tribeca models made from 2006 to 2012, and Forester models made from 2009 to 2012.
The company believes that only 54,000 vehicles are actually equipped with the small accessory lamps under the side of the vehicle, said Subaru spokesman Michael McHale. The potential fire hazard arises when moisture containing road salt gets into the lamp housing and makes contact with the circuit board, he said.
McHale said no fires have been reported, and that there have "less than ten" incidents of smoke in the puddle lamps due to the problem. "There have been no incidents of injury or accidents," he said.
Owners of affected vehicles with puddle lamps are encouraged to contact their dealers, who will install a smaller fuse to correct the problem.
The news comes on an otherwise positive day for Subaru. The company said it sold 36,653 vehicles in December, more than any other month in its history. December also concluded Subaru's best year of sales, with 336,000 vehicles.
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