If You Have This Popular Steamer, Stop Using It, Officials Say After 32 Burn Injuries
You'll need to contact the company if you have a recalled product at home.
For those of us who don't have the energy to unfold an ironing board and get the iron going, a steamer is a perfect alternative. These nifty contraptions are easy to fill with water and heat up in a minute or two, allowing you to quickly smooth wrinkles out. Steamers may not be as effective as a standard iron, but they do the trick—when they work properly, that is. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) just issued a new warning about one popular steamer that's been recalled after 32 burn injuries. Read on to find out which appliance they want you to "immediately stop using."
An assortment of appliances have been subject to recall.
So far this year, a wide range of products have been recalled, including several appliances. In June, certain Frigidaire and Electrolux refrigerators were recalled after a faulty ice level detector arm in the ice maker was discovered. Six additional refrigerator models were pulled in April, this time by GE Appliances. The freezer handle had the potential to break off and pose a fall hazard, having already resulted in 37 injuries by April 14, per the CPSC.
More recently, U-Line Corporation of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, voluntarily recalled its Outdoor Series 24-inch Built-In Convertible Freezers. According to a notice from the CPSC, the freezers had the potential to overheat and create a fire hazard. By Oct. 13, when the recall was announced, three freezer fires had already been reported.
Now, the CPSC announced yet another appliance recall, and this time it affects a steamer that may be in your hall closet or laundry room.
A particularly popular brand is in the hot seat.
On Nov. 3, the CPSC announced that Empower Brands is recalling specific Black+Decker Garment Steamers.
The recall includes models HGS011, HGS011F, and HGS011S, and you can find this information printed on the bottom of the steamer base. The date codes are on the power plug blade, starting with three numbers and ending with ZJ. If your steamer has a number less than 211, like 102ZJ or 210ZJ, it may be affected, but if it's 211 or higher, like 211ZJ or 220ZJ, it's not included in the recall.
Universal product codes (UPC) also correspond with certain models, printed on the side, back, and bottom of packaging. Model HGS011F has a UPC of 0 50875 82840 7; model HGS011S has a UPC of 0 50875 82839 1; and model HGS011 has a UPC 0 50875 82838 4.
The Black+Decker brand name is also printed at the bottom of the steamers.
The steamers were sold by major retailers.
Approximately 518,500 steamers were distributed between June 2021 and Sept. 2022, priced between $16 and $23. They were sold in stores and online at popular retailers such as Walmart, Target, and Bed Bath & Beyond, among others, and also available on Black+Decker's website.
They've been pulled due to potential burn hazards, as steamers "can expel, spray or leak hot water during use, posing a burn hazard to consumers," the CPSC announcement states.
To date, Empower Brands has received a substantial number of incident reports, including 241 reports of hot water "expelling from the steamer." Thirty-two of these incidents resulted in burn injuries, two of which were second-degree burns.
Follow these steps to find out if your steamer is being recalled.
If you're worried you have a recalled steamer, there are a few key indicators you can check for aside from the model number and UPC. Steamers came in several colors and were approximately 11 inches high and six inches wide, equipped with a large handle.
If you still have the original packaging, you can look for a green dot on the bottom. If you don't see one, your steamer is a part of the recall. Without the box, you can remove the steamer head and look on the underside for a "triangle notch" on the plastic seam. If there's no triangle, it's another sign your steamer is part of the recall.
The CPSC asks that you "immediately stop using" recalled steamers and reach out to Empower Brands directly for a free replacement head. You can call the company at 800-990-5298 between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. central time, Monday through Friday, or send an email to [email protected]. You can also visit the product recall page and register for your replacement part there.