AmazonBasics is one of the Amazon company’s private-label lines. There are more than 5,000 budget-friendly items that are part of AmazonBasics, including household items and electronics. Recently, however, there have been concerns andcomplaints about the safety of AmazonBasics, and namely, their electronic products.
According to a report from CNN, over the last four years, there have been at least 1500 reviews describing consumer electronics that smoked, melted, exploded, or caught fire.
The following are some of the things to know about AmazonBasics in general and the potential dangers these products could create.
An Overview of AmazonBasics
Amazon is primarily known as the world’s largest online retailer, where third-party retailers can go to sell their products through the platform.
AmazonBasics is one of the company’s private-label brands. While they do have the Amazon name, the products aren’t the same as official Amazon products like the Kindle, so it can get a little confusing.
Amazon doesn’t actually make the products. Instead, they buy them from manufacturers and then use their own branding including labeling and packaging. The advantage for Amazon is that they can buy massive quantities of these items for relatively low prices and then make a profit.
There are hundreds of Amazon private brands—AmazonBasicsis just one of many.
There are many suppliers that make the actual products sold under the AmazonBasics brand, meaning there’s not a lot of consistency.
AmazonBasics Could Be a Fire Hazard
There are reports that dozens of products marketed as AmazonBasics could be a fire hazard, putting your home and family potentially at risk.
As was mentioned, CNN looked at reviews across around 70 AmazonBasics products and found that consumers often mentioned fires, melting and similar safety risks.
In just one of many examples, a man was hospitalized with burns after an AmazonBasics USB cable caught fire and was lying over a chair. While some of the mentioned products aren’t for sale anymore, some are, despite the hazard risks.
In a separate incident, a 2017 housefire was determined to have been sparked by an AmazonBasics USB cord.
In another report, a surge protector from AmazonBasics turned into a “blowtorch.” The user said flames started shooting out of it.
Another man who bought an AmazonBasics surge protector said in 2018 that it caught fire while just one mobile phone charger was plugged into it, and the charger wasn’t even in use at the time. The man said he contacted Amazon, and they offered him a refund, but he kept reaching out because he didn’tfeel that was enough. Amazon didn’t end up accepting liability in the fire but did negotiate a $1,469 settlement with the man.
CNN says that Amazon has only issued recalls for two of their AmazonBasics products every, and they haven’t acknowledged the hazards in any products beyond that. When CNN went to Amazon, the company did say that they’d investigated eight of the products mentioned but found they met their safety standards.
Federal Regulators Are Probing the Products
Even more recently than the initial CNN report, it came to light that federal safety regulators are reviewing some of the products.At least eight, which include a voice-controlled microwave, a battery charger, surge protectors, phone chargers and patio heaters, are being reviewed by the US Consumer Product Safety Commission.
Should You Avoid Electronics?
There are some things that are probably fine to buy from AmazonBasics. For example, resistance bands to workout with or certain household items that really pose no risk might be fine.
You might, however, avoid AmazonBasics electronics, at least while federal regulators are probing the items.
Cables, chargers, batteries and other electronics are some of AmazonBasic’s biggest sellers but also the potentially riskiest items.
These AmazonBasics can be appealing to consumers because they’re cheap, but you could be safer and better off paying a bit more for something with a better reputation.
Amazon has been scrutinized in recent years for selling defective products. In fact, there are dozens of federal lawsuits aimed at Amazon because of private liability from the past decade.
Some Senators in the U.S. are demanding recalls of hazardous AmazonBasics products, and they do believe that investigations have shown Amazon has ignored serious safety concerns about their electronics.
If you are someone who has experienced injuries or harm because of a product you bought from Amazon, you might need to contact an attorney. Many attorneys are investigating claims regarding hazards from AmaazonBasics products, as well as products third-party vendors sell on Amazon.