Check Your Dehumidifiers to Prevent House Fires

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Sycamore Fire Department recommends that residents check to see if their dehumidifiers are part of a Consumer Product Safety Commission recall

dehumidifierOn September 29, 2014 at 12:23pm, the Sycamore Fire Department responded to a reported basement fire in a residence located in the 400 block of E. High Street. Upon fire department arrival, a small fire was located in a portable dehumidifier unit located in the basement of the structure which resulted in thick sooty smoke from the burning plastic. Firefighters extinguished the fire with a portable fire extinguisher. The residence sustained approximately $10,000 in smoke damage throughout the structure. There were no injuries to occupants or firefighters. The cause of the fire has been ruled accidental.

During the Fire Department fire investigation, it was learned that this appliance was listed on a recall from the Consumer Products Safety Commission. They learned that there has been a large recall issued by the Consumer Products Safety Commission for approximately 2.5 million dehumidifier units in the United States and 55,000 in Canada. The recalled dehumidifier units involve models ranging from 20-70 pints under several different brand names. Property damage reports have more than doubled from $2.15 million in the original recall (Sept. 2013) to nearly $4.5 million today.

In an effort to prevent additional fires, the Sycamore Fire Department would like to ask all residents that have dehumidifiers to check their model to determine if they may be on the recall list.  Residents can find the brand name and pint capacity on the front  of the appliance. Usually, the model number and date code are printed on a sticker on the back, front, or side of the unit. Dehumidifiers can be in white, beige, gray or black color and generally measure between 19 and 24 inches tall, 13 and 15 inches wide, and 9 and 11 inches deep.

Residents then can reference the Consumer Products Safety Commission at www.cpsc.gov and search their model to see if they should return the unit for a refund. Residents may also call the Sycamore Fire Department at 815.895.4514 if you need assistance in determining if your unit is included in the recall.

Consumers are also encouraged to return the warranty card to the manufacturer after product purchases. Manufacturers use this information to notify you in the event of a product recall.

Resources: Consumer Products Safety Commission www.cpsc.gov
Gree International www.greeusa.com

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