Back in September, federal safety regulators advised owners of Samsung washing machine owners to go easy on their heavy laundry loads after several folks had complained about violent, almost explosive, vibrations. Now, more than a month later, Samsung is recalling nearly 3 million machines and disclosing that these washers have done some significant damage to users — like breaking one person’s jaw.
The recall covers 34 different model numbers of Samsung top-loaders sold since March 2011. If you own a Samsung washer, the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s recall notice has the full list of recalled models.
As we mentioned in the earlier story, excessive vibration in these machines can result in the top of the washer detaching from the chassis.
Given that Samsung knows of 733 complaints about excessive vibration, it’s perhaps surprising that only nine of those complaints involve injuries, including the aforementioned broken jaw.
If you have one of these recalled machines, the CPSC says you should contact Samsung immediately (866-264-5636, between 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. ET; there will also eventually be information on Samsung.com).
Owners of recalled washers will have the choice of three options:
1. A free in-home repair that includes reinforcement of the washer’s top and a free one-year extension of the manufacturer’s warranty;
2. A rebate to be applied towards the purchase of a new Samsung or other brand washing machine, along with free installation of the new unit and removal of old unit;
3. A full refund for consumers who purchased their washing machine within the past 30 days of the recall announcement.
Pending repair or replacement, owners of affected washing machines are advised that they can still use them, but they should only use the delicate or waterproof cycles when washing bedding, water-resistant and bulky items. The CPSC says that this lower spin speed in the delicate or waterproof cycles lessens the risk of the washing machine top unexpectedly detaching.
Was this helpful? We’re a non-profit! You can get more stories like this in our twice weekly ad-free newsletter! Click here to sign up.