A proposed class action filed in New York alleges that Sharp Electronics Corporation’s microwave drawers are defective and prone to catching fire.
According to the complaint, Sharp Electronics has offered six models of microwave drawers – SMD2470AH, SMD2470AS, SMD3070AS, SMD2480CS, KB6524PS, and KB6525PS – five of which currently remain on the market. The case claims all five models, which cost between $1,000 and $1,700 each, contain a defect that causes the magnetron tube within the machines to overheat, leading to the destruction of other microwave components and a potential fire risk.
“More specifically,” the complaint reads, “the Microwaves are defectively designed and/or manufactured such that, under normal and intended use, the electromagnetic waves generated by the magnetron tube are unable to properly move through the waveguide into the cooking cavity, resulting in buzzing, smoking, overheating, and eventual destruction of the magnetron, leading to scorching of the waveguide.”
The case says the damage can occur in less than 30 seconds and renders the appliance unfit for its intended purpose. Even further, the lawsuit argues that due to the alleged defect, the microwaves fail to produce their advertised 950 watts of cooking capacity and instead only operate at a maximum of 750 watts.
Sharp Electronics, for its part, has allegedly responded to customer complaints by replacing these “unreasonably dangerous” machines with equally defective microwaves. In other cases, the suit says, the company has improperly denied consumers’ warranty claims, suggested they purchase an extended warranty, or asked them to sign a waiver of their rights.
Per the plaintiff, the woman says she reported problems with her microwave drawer to the defendant after the appliance began to spark and emit smoke during use. The company supposedly replaced the microwave, but the new machine also failed about a year later, the suit says. In response to the plaintiff’s reported problems with the second microwave, Sharp Electronics allegedly asked her if she would purchase an extended warranty, which she refused, and then offered to replace her microwave with an “upgraded” version if she signed a waiver releasing the company of any liability associated with the appliance. The plaintiff says she refused this offer as well, since she “had no reason to believe Sharp had actually fixed the defect with the Microwave.”
The lawsuit alleges that Sharp Electronics knew about and attempted to conceal the defect prior to selling the microwave drawers and then refused to provide an adequate remedy when the appliances inevitably failed. The plaintiff says if she had known about the alleged defect, she never would have purchased the microwave or would have paid less for it.