Cars these days have airbags, sensors, crumple zones, tempered glass, and other safety features. But the OG, and arguably the most important, safety feature is the seat belt. Only trouble is, Hyundai’s seem to be detatching from their anchor pretensioners.
Following owner complaints that their seat belts were detatching in crashes, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) opened an investigation into the 2013 Sonata.
The Seat Belt Pretensioner Recalls
However, there was some debate about the handling of the recall repair. That prompted a second recall in October.
Although the condition of a partially latched anchor pretensioner was fixed through the recall campaign, the condition could potentially happen again if the anchor pretensioner was intentionally disconnected and then improperly reconnected by consumers or repair facilities.
Once that problem was addressed, the investigation was closed.
The front seat belt assembly in the Hyundai Sonata uses a seat belt anchor pretensioner fastened to the car’s inner structure. The anchor pretensioner is fastened to the inner sill before it’s connected to the seat belt linkage.
However, the seat belt can detach from the anchor pretensioner if the connector does not fully latch when the linkage is pressed onto the connector.
When car senses it is in a crash, it will send a signal to the seat belt pretensioner. A small explosive is deployed to take the slack out of the belt, pulling the belt down onto the occupant to keep them tighter to the seat.