Tesla 2022.4.5 Update to Fix Seatbelt Chimes, as Part of NHTSA Safety Recall

Tesla has issued a safety recall for over 817,000 U.S. vehicles due to the seat belt reminder chimes not making a sound when starting the vehicles with an unbuckled seat belt, according to AP News.

The recall was discovered in documents posted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) on Tuesday, and they apply to 2021-2022 Model S and X units, in addition to 2017-2022 Model 3 units and 2022 Model Y units.

The seat belt chimes still show a visual reminder, though federal laws require vehicles to sound an alert when front passengers aren’t wearing a seatbelt upon starting the car.

South Korea’s Automobile Testing and Research Institute discovered the issue on January 6, before Tesla investigated the issue and ultimately concluded a recall was necessary on January 25.

The NHTSA also noted that the issue only occurs when drivers have exited their last drive sessions with the notification still sounding.

“If the audible seat belt reminder chime does not activate at the start of a new drive cycle and the driver does not notice the accompanying visual seat belt telltale, the driver may not be reminded to buckle their seat belt and may begin operating the vehicle in an unbuckled state, which could increase the risk of injury. Tesla is not aware of any injuries or fatalities related to this condition,” explains the description of the safety risk posted on the Safety Recall Report.

Tesla will release an over-the-air (OTA) software update to fix the issue, expected to roll out early this month, with 2022.4.5 or later and 2021.43.101.1.

The automaker had previously fixed the seatbelt issue for Model 3 and Model Y production on January 27, 2022 with software 2021.43.101.1, and for Model S and Model X in production the next day.

Tesla says new vehicles will be delivered with a software update that includes this seatbelt chime fix.

Earlier this week, it was noted that Tesla owner complaints to the NHTSA have increased over the past few months regarding phantom braking, which sometimes happens when the vehicle unexpectedly brakes while Pure Vision Autopilot is engaged.

Canada’s auto regulator Transport Canada is also currently investigating 171 complaints regarding Tesla’s heat pump issues in the cold.