Lenovo is issuing a recall for more than 500,000 computer AC power cords in the U.S. after receiving reports of the cord overheating, sparking, melting, and burning. All problematic cords were reported by users outside the U.S. The current recall also affects 44,000 devices sold in Canada, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.
The recall could apply to anyone who purchased an IdeaPad laptop from the B-, G-, S-, U-, V- or Z-series between February 2011 and June 2012. Plain vanilla Lenovo laptops with no IdeaPad or ThinkPad branding are also affected if they are from the B-, G-, and V- series. You can find a complete list of affected models on Lenovo's website.
The impact on you at home: If you're affected by the recall, Lenovo is urging you to cease using the defective power cords immediately. The company is offering a free replacement you can claim via its customer service line at 1-877-453-6686. Operating hours are between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET Monday through Friday.
Checking your cord model number
Beyond determining your model number, you can also check your power cord to see if you have the potentially defective model. First unplug your PC from the power source and then remove the power cord from your PC.
Next, remove the cord from your power brick (the part that goes between your laptop's power brick and the wall outlet). On the end that plugs into your brick, check to see if the model number is LS-15 as pictured at right.
That's the defective model number. If you don't see LS-15 then you should be in the clear.
This is the second major recall for Lenovo in 2014 after the company had to call back more than 34,000 ThinkPad battery packs in March. Lenovo wasn't the only company to recall batteries this year, however, with both Panasonic and Sony also calling back defective products.
This story was updated on December 12, 2014 at 12:37 p.m. Pacific to correct the phone number for the Lenovo customer help line, which was published incorrectly on the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission website.