Through the first six months of 2014, General Motors has recalled 29 million cars and trucks in 54 different actions. If your author's notoriously sketchy math is correct, that'd work out to one recall every 3.5 days (as of this writing). GM is actively fighting to make sure there isn't a 55th recall, though.

Safety critics, including perennial nemesis Clarence Ditlow of the Center for Auto Safety, are calling on GM to recall a further six million pickup trucks and SUVs in northerly climes due to corroding brake lines caused by the use of road salt. There is a catch, here, though ­– the vehicles in question are over 10 years old, and include the 1999 to 2003 Chevrolet Silverado, Suburban and GMC Sierra, as well as the 2000 to 2003 Tahoe and Yukon (shown above).

GM issued the following statement on the matter, obtained by CNN Money:

"Brake line wear on vehicles is a maintenance issue that affects the auto industry, not just General Motors. The trucks in question are long out of factory warranty and owners' manuals urge customers to have their brake lines inspected the same way brake pads need replacement for wear. In fact, more than 20 states require brake line inspections at one- or two-year intervals or when stopped for a violation."

Playing Devil's Advocate, it seems GM has a point. Corroding brake lines are likely to give some indication before letting go, such as leaking brake fluid leaking beneath the vehicle. Ignoring this is no less responsible than ignoring a constant oil or coolant leak. Still, while the vehicles in question are, in some cases, approaching 15 years old, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has been investigating reports of GM brake problems since 2010. According to CNN Money, NHTSA has recorded 26 crashes and one injury due to brake-line failure.

Also going against GM is precedent – just last week, Subaru recalled 660,000 vehicles due to brake line corrosion, although in that particular case, the vehicles were considerably newer.

"This is not like other maintenance items like brake pads," Ditlow told CNN Money. "You don't go into a garage when you get your oil changed and say 'Check my brake lines.'"

What are your thoughts on this? Is this a simple maintenance issue that's on the heads of owners, or should GM be held responsible here? Register your opinion in our unofficial poll, and then head into Comments and duke it out over your position.

Should GM have to recall older vehicles over corroded brake lines?
Yes, there should be a recall. 468 (45.0%)
No, it's a maintenance issue and is the consumer's responsibility. 516 (49.7%)
I'm not sure. 55 (5.3%)


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 10 Comments
      • 1 Year Ago
      I have an '02 Avalanche, and one of the brake lines burst this spring. Fortunately, I was still in my driveway. I looked and they were all rusty and corroded, so I went through the huge project of replacing them all. This is far from "maintenance". A true maintenance item is made so that it is easily replaced. Changing out brake lines certainly does not fall in that category.
        WhoIsTylerDurden
        • 1 Year Ago
        It IS a maintenance issue. Brake fluid should be changed every 2-3 years. Brake fluid is hygroscopic and becomes extremely corrosive in just a few years. I recently helped flush the brake fluid of a friend's vehicle that only had 25k miles on it and the fluid was nearly black. Brake fluid is cheap and most lube shops offer the service for under $30. If only more morons would follow their maintenance manual -- chances are, this would be a non issue.
        Jason
        • 1 Year Ago
        Exactly why they don't want to fix them.
      kingrat001
      • 1 Year Ago
      As a former owner of a 2000 Sierra, I would say it should have been recalled for brake issues almost from day one. On rough pavement, it had a lot of trouble stopping. Ford and Dodge trucks had no issues, but every GM truck I rode in or drove had issues with the ABS acting very strangely when in a panic stop on a rough road. The best way around it was to "pedal it" take all the pressure off your foot and then slam the brakes on again as fast as you can. When I bought my 2003 Ram, I was amazed at how much better it stopped in general than the GM trucks did. I complained and complained to the dealer and to GM both, and got nowhere.
      Karfreek
      • 1 Year Ago
      I know many owners of these trucks that were reparing brake lines at the 5-6 year mark because brake lines had rotted out.
      gasaraki88
      • 1 Year Ago
      If Subaru can do it, so can GM. Subaru recalled their cars that were over 7 years old. 10 is not that much older.
      WhoIsTylerDurden
      • 1 Year Ago
      Almost every auto manufacturer recommends changing brake fluid every 3 years or so. Highly doubt 9/10 of these vehicles had much more than a brake fluid top-off.
      Avinash Machado
      • 1 Year Ago
      Not sure.
      ken
      • 1 Year Ago
      These people are stupid its not chevys problem its an owner problem how long do these people expect the break lines to last there old probly outdated
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