“A yellow cap left on during the manufacturing process can cover one of the two smoke sensors and compromise the smoke alarm’s ability to detect smoke, posing a risk of consumers not being alerted to a fire in their home,” the Consumer Product Safety Commission recall states.
The two products affected by the defect are the Kidde dual-sensor (photoelectric and ionization) smoke alarms, models PI2010 and PI9010.
About 452,000 have been sold in the U.S. and about 40,000 more in Canada. They were sold at Menards, The Home Depot, Walmart and other department, home and hardware stores as well as on amazon.com, shopkidde.com and other websites, between September 2016 and January 2018. They cost $20 to $40.
To see if your smoke detector is compromised, the CPSC instructs, “Consumers should remove the alarm from the wall/ceiling and visually inspect it through the opening on the side of the alarm for the presence of a yellow cap.”
They warn that consumers should not try to take apart the alarm or try to remove the cap if it is present: “If a yellow cap is present, the consumer should immediately contact Kidde to receive instructions and request a free replacement smoke alarm.”
Users who find a yellow cap in their alarm should remove and discard the item, but only after they receive a replacement alarm.
The CPSC notes, “If no yellow cap is present, consumers should reinstall the smoke alarm and no further action is needed.”
So far no incidents or injuries have been reported as a result of the offending cap being present.