Honda is currently running a worldwide recall for their SRS airbags for affected cars. This recall has become critical enough that Honda is strongly urging all Honda owners to take action if their cars are affected. Action must be taken immediately as recent events has made 'asap' no longer fast enough. Recall notices have been sent out via registered mail but owners can also check if their car is affected by the recall themselves. They can call their respective Honda offices or any of the authorized service centers. For those who might choose not to call, you can also check for the update/recall yourself at the official Honda website, perhaps the most convenient and direct way.

Checking if your Honda is affected by the recall online via the official Honda website is straightforward except for one step involving your car's VIN (Vehicle Identification Number), also called the "Chassis Number". This will not be of any issue at all for Honda enthusiasts, especially the hardcore fans. But for the regular Honda owners, who are not car-nuts, this might cause some confusion - i.e. where to get the VIN ? In this article, we go through the procedure step-by-step to guide those who wishes to do the online checking.

The first step is to go to the official Honda website of your country. For Malaysia, the official Honda Malaysia website is at If you are from another country, check with your country Honda office for the website. My understanding is that the Takata related SRS (airbag) recall is a global concern for Honda (and all other manufacturers affected) and most, if not all of them, will have online checking enabled for their customers. Alternately, the Honda official 'worldwide' website at might have the website address that you want. This article is for the Honda Malaysia website.

At the menu options at the top of the page, hover your mouse cursor over the item "SERVICE & MAINTENANCE". The page is flash enabled and a drop down menu appears immediately after hovering the cursor over this menu item. From the drop down menu, select (click on) "PRODUCT UPDATE (RECALL)". This will bring you to the Honda Malaysia Recall page. Note that this page is for all recalls issued by Honda Malaysia, not just the Takata SRS airbag recall.

All cars are identified by a "VIN" or Vehicle Identification Number, often also called the "Chassis Number". It is much like our identity number in our personal documents, e.g. identity card number, or passport number, or employee number, etc.

The thing is if you are dealing with a hardcore Honda fan, you need also to know that this is not to be confused with the "Chassis Code" which is a code comprising letters and digits that identify the specific model of the car, e.g. FD2 for 8G Civic, GD3 for 1G Honda Jazz VTEC, and so forth. However, the chassis code almost always features in the VIN/Chassis Number, i.e. it is part of the VIN, usually preceding it right at the front. Actually for Honda, the VIN or Chassis number is the Chassis code followed by what can be taken to be the 'serial number' of the car. The VIN almost precisely identifies the model, type and often, also the engine of the car.

To check if your car is affected in any recall (not just the Takata airbag recall), Honda Malaysia requires your car's VIN/Chassis number. The problem for many people do not know where to locate this VIN/chassis code. Here, we explain the two most common procedures.

The most straightforward procedure to get your car's VIN/chassis number, at least here in Malaysia, is simply by referring to your car's JPJ (RTD) registration card. The top photo on the left is the top half of the front of the registration card. Item 2 on the left hand side of the card is the VIN/Chassis number and is in fact labelled "No. Casis" which is malay for "Chassis Number" (the term VIN is not that popularly used in Malaysia).

However, for brand new cars, many times the local practise is for the financier to hold custody of your registration card. This is why you should at least get a photocopy of the card before handing it over to the bank. However, for those who don't even have a photocopy, instead of going to the bank to get the chassis number, you can also check for the VIN plate that is on all Hondas. This is a metal plate on which is engraved details of your car including the VIN/Chassis number.

The main problem here however is that Honda is not consistent in the placement/location of this VIN plate. It used to be on the engine bay and often also engraved on the "firewall" of the engine bay (the part which separates the engine bay from the cabin). But more recently, Honda has moved the location of the VIN plate to the car body itself, usually on the bottom of what car-people likes to call the 'B-pillar' (the pillar just behind the front seat where the front door closes against).

So these are the places you should look to find your car's VIN plate if you don't have a photocopy of your car's registration card.

The 2nd photo on the left is of the VIN plate location on a Honda Freed. For all recent Honda cars, this is the location of the VIN plate.

Once you have gotten your car's VIN/Chassis number, the remaining steps are straightforward. Key in the full VIN/Chassis Number on the Product recall page. Remember the first 3 or 4 characters will be the model/chassis code and will be a mixture of characters and digits. So far, all codes starts with at least two characters, FD2, GD3, etc. So your VIN/Chassis number should/would start with two characters followed by a string of digits. After keying in the VIN, click on the "submit" buttom below the input window.

If your Honda is involved in any recall (again remember this page is for all Honda Malaysia recalls, not just the Takata SRS airbag recall), a pop up window will show indicating the type of recall involved, together with instructions for how to let Honda Malaysia contact you. The preferred method is for you to key in your Name, contact number, and optionally also your email and Honda Malaysia will contact you immediately to arrange for your recall process. As indicated at the bottom of the pop-up window, you can also elect to call the Honda Malaysia hotline number instead, or even to simply go over to your nearest official Honda service center to arrange for the recall to be performed.

In closing, we wish to once again firmly re-iterate our strongest advice for you to immediately check if your Honda is involved in any Honda product update/recall, especially the Takata SRS airbag one. If it is, then we further very very strongly advice you to contact Honda/their authorized service center to get the update/recall done immediately. There is a reason why we are not writing to get the update done 'asap'. Because 'asap' is no longer fast enough if your Honda is involved in the Takata SRS Airbag recall. The keyword is 'NOW'.

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July 2017
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