Bathroom heaters being recalled after fires

Retailers are voluntarily recalling a bathroom heater after being associated with at least 15 fires or overheating events, the government says.

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) says the Serene S2068, manufactured in March 2021, has a defect which can cause harm to people or damage to property.

“We are aware of at least 15 fires or overheating events associated with these heaters and want to encourage anyone who has these heaters to contact the retailer immediately,” says Ian Caplin, a business specialist at MBIE.

WorkSafe issued a prohibition of sale and use notice on the heaters heaters in February 2024.

The manufacturer of this heater closed their business in New Zealand, which means MBIE has had to work directly with several retailers to issue voluntary recall notices.

“Instead of the actual manufacturer issuing a recall, retailers who sold the heaters have been encouraged to voluntarily recall them,” Caplin says.

“Even if the retailer that sold the heater hasn’t yet issued the voluntary recall, New Zealanders can reject the goods under the Consumer Guarantees Act and ask for a replacement or a refund.”

Caplin explained retailers in New Zealand had a responsibility to provide consumers with a remedy when a product was deemed unsafe.

WorkSafe was investigating two other Serene bathroom heaters, models S2069 and S207T.

Under recent testing those models did not comply with required safety standards.

Once these investigations are complete, MBIE will decide if further voluntary recalls should be asked for.

Information on recalled heater

The prohibited S2068 heater is described as:

  • Wall mounted fan heater with step-down thermostat with pull-cord on-off switch, for fixed-wired installation in bathrooms and similar locations
  • Mirror polished stainless steel metal shell or white shell with die cast grill
  • Dimensions: 300 mm wide, 210 mm high and 110 mm deep

The prohibited S2068 heaters have a serial number in the following ranges:

  • VH145173 – VH147003
  • VK154294 – VK160567
  • WF167045 – WF168874

Further information on the voluntary recall and information on the suppliers can be found on the Product Safety website.

According to the news on Radio New Zealand

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