HP fire-prone battery recall expanded to 101,000

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HP fire-prone battery recall expanded to 101,000

Laptops bought between March 2013 and October 2016 affected.

HP has expanded a recall for lithium-ion batteries in the company's laptops that pose fire and burn hazards, asking users to return some 101,000 units for exchange.

The company originally issued a recall for some 41,000 batteries in June 2016, but additional faulty batteries have since been discovered, the company said.

These can overheat and cause fires and burns to customers, according to HP.

Batteries in HP, Compaq, HP ProBook, HP ENVY, Compaq Presario and HP Pavillion laptops sold between March 2013 and October last year, as well as spares and replacement parts provided by the company's support unit, are affected.

HP said customers should cease to use the batteries immediately. The laptops can be still be used on mains power, with no battery installed. 

Replacement batteries are provided for for free.

HP has released a Windows utility that lets customers check if their batteries are affected, and order replacement units. This can also be done manually, by entering notebook serial and battery bar code number on a web page.

Large recalls of overheating batteries by different PC manufacturers have been common occurrences over the past decade.

Sony recalled fire-prone batteries in 2006 and 2008, and Toshiba asked customers to return power packs for 54 models in February last year.

HP recalled 135,000 batteries in 2005 after customers complained of overheating and melting units, and 162,000 in 2011.

The United States Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) accepted a US$405,000 settlement from HP in 2012 for overheating and burning batteries, a small number of which caused serious injuries to customers.

HP denied the CPSC's claims however, and the settlement - which was criticised for being small - was not an admission of guilt by the tech giant.

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