Car sun visor shield suddenly flipped down and blocked driver's view; Stop using it if fixing is loose
The National Consumer Affairs Center of Japan (hereinafter called "NCAC") received three requests for a test of car sun visor shields sold through mail order (one request in June 2016 and two requests in August 2016) (See Photo 1 and Table 1). They reported that a day anti-glare shield suddenly flipped down and blocked driver's view while driving, and requested to investigate the cause. As a result of NCAC's product test, we've found out that repeated up and down movement wears out plastic gears and sometimes the shield flips down due to impact while driving (See Photo 2).
If you have a product named "Pahfekutobyu dei & naito baizah" (seller: TV Shopping Laboratory Co, Ltd) and you feel its shield gears are getting loose, stop using the product.
Photo 1. Appearance of the product
|Brand name||Pahfekutobyu dei & naito baizah|
|Importer||Zanmai Seikatsu Co, Ltd
(Japan Corporate Number: 6010401080601)
|Seller||TV Shopping Laboratory Co. Ltd.
(Japan Corporate Number: 3010801007669)
|Release date / Units sold||March 2015 / approximately 800,000|
|Country of production||China|
|Price (including tax)||3,980 yen|
Photo 2. Appearance of a day anti-glare shield before and after driving
Outline of the product
The product intends to reduce the glare for a driver at day and night time. It consists of a night anti-glare shield (yellow), a day anti-glare shield (dark color), and a clip for fixing the product to a car sun visor (See Photo 3). The clip has a movable part (gears). Two gears for each shield allow stepwise angle change to flip the shield up and down (See Photo 1).
Photo 3. Appearance of each shield applied to a car sun visor
Data from PIO-NET (Practical Living Information Online-Network System) 1
PIO-NET received 10 inquiries about the product reporting that the shield moved down. 2 Of these 10 cases, there was one case where a driver got injured.
- 1 PIO-NET (Practical Living Information Online-Network System) is a database that collects information on inquiries concerning consumer affairs by linking the National Consumer Affairs Center of Japan (NCAC) with local consumer centers and similar organizations across Japan via an online network.
- 2 Data registered from March 2015 through the end of September 2016. The number of the cases was specially counted for this publication.
- A car sun visor shield which I bought four months before flipped down while driving. I requested the seller to replace the product with new one. Even after the replacement, the shield suddenly flipped down while driving one or two months ago, as a result of which I got injured near my eye and received medical treatment. Yesterday the shield flipped down due to vibration while driving and hurt my face. I didn't get medical treatment this time. Once the shield moved down when the door was shut.
- (received in March 2016, woman in her 60s in Oita)
- Six months after purchasing car sun visor shields, the shield flipped down due to vibration soon after I started driving a car. It is dangerous because driver's view is suddenly blocked.
- (received in July 2016, man in his 70s in Tokyo)
The following product test was conducted using 10 new products of the same type under the environment of room temperature around 20 centigrade.
Outline of the product test
- Attach the new product of the same type to a genuine car sun visor.
- Pull the middle edge of the day anti-glare shield with a hook-shaped push and pull gauge to measure the force necessary to move it down (See Photo 4).
- Hold the middle edge or the left edge of the day anti-glare shield with one hand and move it up and down 100 times for each case repeatedly (See Photo 5).
- After the repeated movement, again measure the force necessary to move it down.
- Then, attach the product to the car sun visor and drive the car.
Photo 4. Scene of measuring
Photo 5. Scene of moving the day anti-glare shield up and down
According to the test result, the force necessary for lowering the new day anti-glare shield varied among the 10 pieces from 0.96 N to 5.02 N (average: 2.38 N (0.242 kgf)). The maximum value is five times larger than the minimum value. (See Table 2)
Soon after starting up and down movement, the movable part of the clip (gears) wore away and plastic powder clung to the shield (See Photo 6). After the repeated up and down movement, the force necessary for lowering the day anti-glare shield varied from 0.17 N to 0.84 N (average: 0.46 N (0.047 kgf)). The average value was about one fifth of that of the new products (average: 2.38 N (0.242 kgf)).
While driving, 5 out of 10 day anti-glare shields flipped down when the car drove over a bump (See Photo 2).
|New products||0.96 N - 5.02 N (average: 2.38 N)|
|After repeated movement 3||0.17 N - 0.84 N (average: 0.46 N)|
- 3 After repeated up and down movement, 5 out of 10 day anti-glare shields moved down while driving.
Photo 6. Plastic powder clung to a day anti-glare shield
Incidentally, neither the outer case nor the instruction manual indicated durable years or the durable number of use.
Advice for consumers
The product is used while driving a car. If the shield suddenly flips down, it could cause an accident. If you feel the shield gears are getting loose, stop using the product right away.
The seller accepts inquiries from consumers.