Double Insight has issued a voluntary recall for around 104,000 units of its Gem 65 8-In-1 Multicooker, saying over 100 consumers have reported overheating incidents.
By Laurence Banville
Double Insight, manufacturer of the Instant Pot, the country's most popular pressure cooker, has issued a voluntary recall for its Gem 65 8-in-1 Multicooker, citing "customer reports of the product overheating, resulting in localized damage to the underside of the product."
To date, Double Insight has received at least 107 reports of overheating, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission. No personal injuries have yet been reported, but five consumers have described minor property damage.
Gem 65 Cooker Recalled After Overheating ReportsThe recall announcement, published on March 1, 2018, instructs consumers to stop using the multicooker immediately and return the product to Walmart for a free replacement.
In a post on its Facebook page, Instant Pot told consumers that the problem was confined to five of the Gem 65's batchcodes:
Walmart Offers Free ReplacementsInstant Pot's Gem 65 Multicooker is sold exclusively at Walmart, where consumers can go for a free replacement. Around 104,000 cookers are included in the recall. Instant Pot has set up a website, https://www.gemmulticooker.com/, to help consumers determine whether or not their own cookers are affected.
Manufacturing Defect Creates Fire HazardInstant Pot has also provided an explanation for the observed product failures: "The overheating is the result of a tooling misalignment during the manufacturing process, which created a gap between the bottom of the inner pot and top surface of the heating plate in the product. This gap can cause the multicooker to overheat and melt on the underside, posing a fire hazard to consumers."
Consumers Question Time Of Initial Warning, RecallOn February 18, 2018, Instant Pot has warned consumers to the Gem 65 8-in-1 Multicooker, saying the product could overheat during operation, leading to "localized melting damage to the underside of the product." But several commenters on Instant Pot's Facebook page say they received identical warnings months ago.
Poster Raina Lincicum complained, "It's not a few customers tho. There are countless people who have been waiting MONTHS since receiving this message as an email." Soon after that comment was published, the moderator for Instant Pot's Facebook page turned off the comments for the company's warning post. It's still unclear why Instant Pot only released a public warning about the problem on February 18, 2018, if the company was sending out private warnings to individual customers months earlier.
In recent years, dozens of consumers have filed product liability lawsuits over pressure cooker explosions, often claiming severe personal injuries.