Apple announces iPhone USB charger replacement program over ‘safety risk’ concerns

iPhone USB power adapter replacement in Europe

Apple Friday announced a replacement program for certain USB iPhone power adapters sold in Europe and elsewhere that “may overheat and pose a safety risk”. The affected adapters that carry a model number of A1300 have been recalled and will be replaced with a new variant, the A1400 model.

According to the firm’s official statement, the five-watt Apple European USB power adapter that “in rare cases” may overheat came with the iPhone 3Gs, iPhone 4 and iPhone 4s units.

These iPhones shipped from October 2009 to September 2012 to a total of 45 countries, mostly European. The broken adapter was sold as a standalone accessory, too…

Apple notes it has “voluntarily decided” to put forth a replacement program to exchange “every affected power adapter” for a new, redesigned adapter, free of charge.

“We encourage customers to exchange any affected adapter for a new one as soon as possible using the exchange process below,” urges the company.

Customers in the following countries may be affected: Albania, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Egypt, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Israel, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey and Vietnam.

This initiative should not be confused with last year’s Takeback Program¬†which¬†replaced unauthorized third-party USB power adapters with a credit towards the purchase of an official Apple power adapter.

Now, folks who have an affected adapter (model A1300) should discontinue use and exchange it for a new one (model A1400) by bringing the adapter to an Apple Retail Store or a participating Apple Authorized Service Provider.

“You can charge your iPhone by connecting it via a USB cable to your computer until you receive a replacement adapter,” advises the iPhone maker.

As part of the exchange process, Apple will need to verify your iPhone serial number so you should bring your handset with you. Apple’s other five-watt USB power adapters are not part of the replacement program, the company cautioned.

If you’ve already paid for a replacement over the overheating issue, Apple will be happy to issue a refund.

More on the exchange process, terms and conditions, the participating outlets and localized information is available over at Apple’s webpage.