It's a no-brainer that smoking can harm your baby. But billowing smoke from a house on fire that can't be detected by a faulty alarm spells disaster for all involved.
Which is why a red flag has been raised by Kidde, which reported on Wednesday that it's recalling 452,000 smoke alert devices sold in the U.S., as well as 40,000 sold in Canada. The recall was issued when the manufacturer discovered a component in the alarm is unable to recognize smoke once installed. The feature is impeded by a yellow cap that covers one of the smoke sensors. Apparently, the cap was supposed to have been removed during the assembly of the alarm.
The flagged products were available at several retailers, but most of them were bought at Home Depot and Wal-Mart, as well as via online at Amazon.com and ShopKidde.com from September 2016 to January 2018. Retail prices of the defected alarms ranged from $20 to $40.
By looking through a slit on the side of the product, consumers should be able to identify the yellow object covering a sensor. If there's no yellow visible, Kidde assures customers the model is safe to use.
Anyone with a Kidde detector should also find out whether the item purchased is either a battery-operated PI9010 version or a hard-wired PI2010 model. They should also check for dates on the unit from Sept. 10, 2016 to Oct. 13, 2017. If those findings are a match, customers should contact Kidde for a replacement, free of charge.
To get a replacement, consumers are advised to call the company toll-free at 833-551-7739 from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET Monday through Friday or 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. They can also visit the company's website and click on Product Safety Recall. In the meantime, the company is warning those who discover that yellow cap to refrain from disassembling the unit to remove the cap.
The latest recall is the latest instance of Kidde products that were reported defective. Late in 2017, the company had to recall some 38 million of its fire extinguishers after the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission discovered the items were prone to clogging, which severely hampered their performance.