Every business making consumer products must go through rigorous testing and meet exacting standards of safety and performance. Some products work better than others, but every brand tries to meet these standards of safety to the best of their factory ability. But sometimes, something goes wrong in the design or production that creates a flaw, and that flaw is only discovered after a few hundred or thousand units have been bought and used by customers. After all, no amount of lab testing can compare to the rigorous testing of massive consumer use.
When reports are received that a product has defects, especially potentially harmful defects, a recall is issued. Recalls can be remedied with a quick repair or returned for refunds or replacements. Refunds happen all the time, with hundreds of product recalls for repair or replacement every year. Manufacturing isn’t perfect, and this is the industry’s way of making sure everyone is safe even when a few of the thousands of product batches each year are flawed.
That said, it’s important to remain aware of the recalls issued each year just to be sure that none of your appliances or home products have a potentially harmful flaw. Let’s take a look at four of the appliance recalls issued within the past year.
BRP Sea-Doo Marine Cooler
Recall Date: June 27, 2019
A good cooler is airtight to keep in the cold and prevent leaks when the ice inside starts to melt. You want a cooler that stays closed even if it’s knocking around in the back of your truck on the way to or from a camping trip. Or on a boat rocking around on the ocean. So that is exactly what the BRP brand sought to offer with their See-Doo Marine Cooler. The See-Doo performs well in all the ways a cooler should, with one safety problem unrealized until after a few thousand units were sold: The lid automatically locks closed.
The problem is that the Sea-Doo is large enough that a person could climb in and become trapped inside. And the inside of the cooler is airtight. Combined with the automatic locking lid, this poses potential entrapment and suffocation hazards. This is a design flaw rather than a manufacturing flaw, but still potentially dangerous.
- The large cooler automatically locks and forms an airtight seal
- Entrapment and suffocation is possible.
- The Solution
- Keep out of reach of children and do not allow anyone to climb inside.
- Contact a BRP Sea-Doo dealer for a repair that will remove the automatic locking mechanism for free.
H.E. Industrial Electric Garage Heater
Recall Date: June 21, 2019
Garage workshops can get very cold in the winter. Garages tend to be uninsulated, or less insulated than the rest of the house. But that doesn’t mean we don’t have tasks to take care of in there. From laundry to car maintenance to workshop projects, it’s often practical to install a space heater in the garage for the colder winter months. However, the space heater you choose needs to be both durable and safe to be appropriate for in-home use.The electric garage heater from H.E. Industrial did not quite live up to those standards. These simple red metal heaters are sold from Menards and Northern Tool store locations have a heating element that are able to overheat, which poses a fire hazard. However, no incidents of fire or injury have been reported inside the US.
- The heating element can overheat which creates risk of starting a local fire.
- The Solution
- If the heater was purchased at a Northern Tool location, take it into the store for a full refund or gift certificate.
- If the heater was purchased at a Menards, contact H.E. Industrial for a full refund.
Hayward Industries Pool Heater Vent Kit
Recall Date: June 12, 2019
This one is more complex. A pool heater emits CO2, also known as carbon monoxide. This is a dangerous, toxic gas that is colorless and odorless. It is a common byproduct of heaters which is why ventilation is very important. So a pool heater vent kit is what you install for hot tubs and swimming pools on top of the heater which heats the water. It carries the toxic fumes away and the vent pipe releases the carbon monoxide outdoors where it can disperse safely.
Unfortunately, the Hayward vent kits installed on gas pool heaters are not the right size. This means the seal that contains and channels the carbon monoxide is not reliable and can result in a CO2 leak. This is dangerous both in the area of the vent and for any pools and hot tubs located indoors. The vents were recalled and anyone who bought a Hayward UHXNEGVT15001 Negative Pressure 6-inch Vent Kit for pool heaters should remedy the situation immediately. Fortunately, no incidents of injury have been reported. The company identified this problem independently.
- The Problem
- The vent doesn’t fit and leaks CO2, resulting in carbon monoxide poisoning.
- The Solution
- Turn off your pool heater immediately.
- Contact Hayward for free replacement and installation of a new vent kit.
- Do not use your pool heater until a new vent is installed.
AmazonBasics Ceramic Space Heaters
Recall Date: June 11, 2019
As you may have noticed, heaters and heater accessories have featured heavily in this batch of recalls. That is because heaters are among the most dangerous appliances we use. Heating elements that overheat pose a serious fire risk. Excessive heat can start a fire inside the appliance or project so much heat that fire can start with nearby combustible materials like curtains or furniture. This recall is no exception.
The AmazonBasics 1500 watt ceramic space heater is yet another heater with a minor manufacturing flaw that makes them dangerous. The AmazonBasics heater is capable of overheating, though the precise cause is not given. So far, 25 people in the US and 5 people in Canada have reported that the heaters were overheating, burning, and even sparking. Two reports also noted minor damage to power outlets, suggesting that the problem is a voltage control issue. The good news is that there have been no reported injuries, just alarm.
- The Problem
- The heater will overheat, spark, and damage outlets.
- The Solution
- Stop using the heater immediately.
- Contact Amazon for a full refund.
—A product recall means that something dangerous has gone wrong during design or manufacturing. When a product has been recalled, it can cause harm to the owners or their surroundings. Keep an eye on product recalls to be sure that each of your items is still known to be safe and reliable. Contact us today to learn more about product recalls or if you have a recalled product that needs repair to remedy to the situation.