HP issues global recall of laptops with defective batteries

HP Issues Recall For 50,000 Lithium Ion Batteries

For customers with further questions, HP has set up a detailed FAQ on the battery recall.

The recall affects just the batteries, not the computer itself.

HP's recall comes after eight reports of batteries "overheating, melting or charring", according to the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission.

Customers can visit HP's site to learn if their battery should be replaced. That might sound like a small percentage, but given how many devices HP shifts in a year, it's still likely to be a fairly substantial figure.

So far over 50,000 devices have been affected in just the USA and Canada, with HP saying that 15 models of its laptops sold worldwide between December 2015 and December 2017, along with any replacements purchased from HP or its authorised suppliers, could be hit.

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Being as most of the affected batteries are internal and not user-replaceable, HP has chose to provide users with free battery replacements from its authorised technicians.

Three of those customers also reported property damage of almost $5,000, and one ended up with first-degree burns on their hand. The process involves downloading and installing the Battery Program Validation Utility provided by the company to quickly and easily determine whether or not the battery needs to be replaced, and the whole process only takes up 30 seconds of customers' time.

These batteries are not customer-replaceable. Instead, HP has developed a BIOS update that will put the battery into a "battery safety mode". "Accepting Battery Safety Mode causes the battery to discharge and to cease future charging until Battery Safety Mode is disabled". "We are taking immediate action to address this issue including a voluntary recall and replacement of the batteries". We recently learned that batteries provided by one of our suppliers for certain notebook computers and mobile workstations present a potential safety concern. While in "Battery Safety Mode", the laptops can still function safely while connected to an HP power adaptor.

Included in the recall are a number of HP ProBook G2 and G3 models, ZBook 17 and Zbook Studio laptops, and Pavilion x360 and Envy m6 laptops, among others.

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