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 |  Apr 17 2012, 11:45 AM

Car recalls are no fun for anybody. For the consumer it takes time, for the automaker it wastes money and resources.

A study undertaken by Carfax, a service devoted to providing background information on used cars, found that ignoring safety recalls puts consumer safety and the public’s safety in jeopardy. This may seem a bit obvious; don’t fix the problem, and the problem will get bigger. But the real issue begins when the car changes hands without the new owners knowledge that a recall is out on their new purchase.

In 2011 alone, there were 2.7 million vehicles listed for sale online which had unresolved recalls placed on them. California, Texas and Florida lead the country with the most open recall cars for sale, well over 100,000 in each state in 2011.

There have been cases where a used car was purchased, and within weeks a major defect presented itself. Delaware plumber Bob Knotts tells of his case,”My van caught fire from an electrical recall under the driver’s seat that was never fixed,” said Mr. Knotts.

While the responsibility should fall on the seller of the car to inform the buyer, we all know that not everyone will be honest if there is money to be lost. So before you buy a used car, check for open recalls, because no one wants to spend money just to watch it go up in flames a week later.