According to Toyota, the condenser can leak onto an airbag control module, which in turn could cause a short circuit. In most cases, this will just lead to an airbag warning light, but in rarer instances, the airbags could fail to deploy or pop out of their own accord. There's also a concern over a loss of power steering if the airbag control module develops a short.
It's unclear if there have been any injuries or crashes relating to the defects. Toyota will begin informing owners of affected vehicles via first class mail, and will ask them to report to dealerships for recall work, involving the installation of a cover on the condenser housing.
Scroll down for the official press release from Toyota.
TORRANCE, Calif., Oct. 17, 2013 - Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc., today announced it will conduct a voluntary safety recall of approximately 803,000 Model Year 2012-2013 Camry, Camry Hybrid, Avalon, Avalon Hybrid, and Venza vehicles due to a problem with the air conditioning condenser unit housing.
In the involved vehicles, water from the air conditioning condenser unit housing could leak onto the airbag control module and cause a short circuit, resulting in illumination of the airbag warning light. In some instances, the air bag(s) could become disabled or could inadvertently deploy.
In limited instances, the power steering assist function could also become inoperable if a communication line in the airbag control module is damaged. Loss of power steering assist results in increased steering effort.
To remedy this issue, Toyota dealers will apply sealant and install a cover to the air conditioning condenser unit housing seam located above the airbag control module.
Owners of the involved vehicles will be notified by first class mail to return their vehicles to a Toyota dealer for the repair.
Detailed information is available to customers at www.toyota.com/recall and by calling the Toyota Customer Experience Center at 1-800-331-4331.