I've long advocated using a good surge protector or battery backup to supply power to your tech gear and protect it from power surges, spikes and dropouts. For years my go-to brand has been APC. Unfortunately, Schneider Electric has issued a recall of about 15 million APC surge protectors manufactured prior to 2003 due to a fire hazard. These include the popular 8 and 7 series surge strips. I have 5 APC brand power supplies in my house and sure enough, one of them was in the recall batch.
According to the press release by APC, the recall involves APC 7 and 8 series SurgeArrest surge protectors manufactured before 2003. You can determine the year of manufacture for your unit by looking at the first two digits in the serial number. More information on how to identify recalled units can be found on APC's site, recall.apc.com.
Apparently APC has received over 700 reports of these surge protectors overheating, some have caused property damage or personal injury. APC recommends that consumers immediately stop using the recalled products, unplug them and contact the manufacturer for a free replacement product that is the same model type or a functionally equivalent model. I've filed my claim online and was told I can expect my replacement surge protector within 12 weeks.
Photos of the recalled models are included with this post, courtesy of APC's recall site. If you suspect you may have a recalled model, I suggest you immediately take it out of service and contact APC.