Importer to recall Chinese-made car fuses
EW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- As many as 295,000 sets of cars fuses, each
containing 120 fuses, are being recalled because some of them allow more
electrical current through than they should, according to a newspaper
The fuses were sold over a two-year period beginning in August 2005, by
Harbor Freight Tools, a California-based auto supply retailer. The fuses
were manufactured in China, but the name of the manufacturer has not
Chinese-made products have been under scrutiny recently after several
high-profile recalls including toys made with lead paint, pet food that
contained dangerous additives and tires that could allegedly come apart
Sold under the brand name Storehouse, the sets of blade-type and
mini-blade-type fuses were sold as replacement parts and were not used
as original equipment in any vehicles. The item numbers are 92939 for
the mini-blade-type and 92940 for the blade-type.
After determining that there were "manufacturing inconsistencies with
the materials, connections or size of some of the fuses' elements, which
could result in some fuses not functioning as intended," the company
sent a "defect notice" letter to the National Highway Traffic Safety
Administration on Aug. 10.
The fuses are not marked in any way that would identify them as coming
from Harbor Freight Tools. They have no serial numbers or date codes.
"The best way to determine if the seller of the product was Harbor
Freight Tools would be to review the fuses in conjunction with their
storage case, which is clearly marked as distributed exclusively by
Harbor Freight Tools," the company said in its letter to NHTSA.
Harbor Freight Tools received four complaints of alleged property damage
resulting from defective fuses, according to the defect notice. NHTSA
received an additional two reports of damage directly from consumers,
according to Harbor Freight's defect notice. There were no reports of
deaths or injuries, according to the letter.
General Motors (Charts, Fortune 500) also contacted Harbor Freight
citing concerns about the fuses, according to the defect notice.
GM is preparing a letter to send out to GM dealers asking them not to
use the fuses in repairing vehicles, said Alan Adler, A GM spokesman. GM
prefers that its dealers use only "Genuine GM Parts," Adler said, but
dealers sometimes use parts from other sources. GM car dealers are
The company plans to contact all customers who purchased the fuses
directly from Harbor Freight and will refund the cost of the fuses. In
addition, customers will receive a $5 gift certificate, the company said
in its letter to NHTSA.
The recall will begin some time in September, according to additional
information supplied by NHTSA. The company had originally said in its
defect notification that the recall was to begin on Aug. 15.
A spokesman for Harbor Freight did not immediately respond to a request