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Spiders show up in Honda Accords too

Honda hasn't announced a recall, as Mazda did when the yellow sac spiders were found in Mazda6 sedans, but it has notified dealers to be on the lookout.

March 08, 2011|By Jerry Hirsch, Los Angeles Times
  • Honda Motor Co. hasn't announced a recall of its Accord but it has notified its dealers to be on the lookout for the same yellow sac spider that sparked a recall of 65,000 Mazda6 sedans.
Honda Motor Co. hasn't announced a recall of its Accord but it has notified… (Honda Motor Co. )

The web of mystery continues — Mazda is no longer the only automaker with a spider problem.

The same yellow sac spider that sparked a recall of 65,000 Mazda6 sedans also likes to nest in Honda Accords.

Honda Motor Co. hasn't announced a recall but has notified its dealers to be on the lookout for the spider. The company has issued what is known as a technical service bulletin telling Honda mechanics how to fix the problem.

"It was the same scenario and the same breed of spider. It would get in there and create a blockage that would create problems," said Chris Martin, a Honda spokesman.

Honda doesn't have a record of how many times it has spotted the problem but said it was big enough to put out the alert. Otherwise, mechanics could be spending many hours searching for the source of the problem, and that would run up the bill for Honda if the cars were still under warranty, or for the owners after the warranty expired.

Martin said Honda believes the spider, whose Latin name is Cheiracanthium inclusum, is crawling into the system through the fuel tank door on the outside of the car. The doors fit snugly but are not airtight, to avoid trapping water and debris, he said.

From there the bug probably is crawling down the vent hole, where there is a hidden, snug space, he said.

"It seems pretty random, and we don't have data on regions," Martin said.

Among Hondas, the spider problem shows up the most often in 2008 and 2009 model-year Accords. Mazda Motor Corp. is finding the spiders in Mazda6 cars from the 2009 and 2010 model years.

Mazda said spiders nesting in tiny rubber hoses linked to fuel tank systems could cause pressurization and ventilation problems in certain cars. That could lead to fuel leaks or even fires, though there are no reports of such incidents.

The yellow sac spider is indigenous to all but the most northern states in the U.S. and accounts for a large percentage of spider bites in America. For most people, the bites lead to about the same irritation as a mosquito bite, although in some cases they cause a more severe reaction.

jerry.hirsch@latimes.com

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