Lenovo is offering to replace certain batteries sold with its ThinkPad line of laptops, warning users that they may be permanently damaged due to errors.
The company is offering free replacements for batteries that do not recharge or suffer from "irreparable damage," according to Lenovo's support Web site.
Users need to run a diagnostics tool to see if batteries show any of those symptoms. The tool can be downloaded from Lenovo's support site. If it indicates the battery is either damaged, shows sudden drops in the fuel gauge or fails to recharge, then the battery may need to be replaced.
Eligibility for a free replacement also depends on the laptop model and specific battery installed. Only a limited number of ThinkPad batteries qualify for a free replacement, the company said on its support site. The replacement offer applies to worldwide customers.
Lenovo did not respond to requests for comment on the cause of the error. However, the company wrote on its support site that this was "not a safety recall and does not pose a safety hazard."
The U.S. Consumer Safety Protection Commission in June 2007 asked Lenovo to recall about 100,000 ThinkPad batteries that could overheat and cause a fire. Those batteries were manufactured by Sanyo Electric Co. Ltd.
The laptops affected by this issue include the ThinkPad R60, R61, T60, T61, X60, X61 models with battery part numbers 42T4546, 42T4566, 92P1141, 42T4550, 42T4567, 42T4568, 92P1169, 92P1173, 93P5028, 93P5030.
Editor's Note: This story was corrected at 6:28 p.m. on Aug. 14, 2009.