LG undertakes to take more steps to locate and fix dangerous solar batteries


LG Energy Solution has provided an enforceable undertaking that it will increase its efforts to alert and protect consumers from faulty LG solar storage batteries which can overheat and catch fire without warning.

Since 2020, LG has issued voluntary recalls affecting around 18,000 affected batteries. There have been 15 incidents of property damage caused by the solar batteries in Australia, including a house in Victoria that was completely destroyed.

Concerningly, there are around 4,400 batteries that are yet to be located.

The undertaking accepted by the ACCC contains commitments by LG to undertake a widespread advertising campaign to alert consumers about safety risks with the batteries subject to the recalls, and to use its best endeavours to ensure that all affected batteries are remedied within 12 months.

“We are warning consumers who have a solar energy storage system to check if their battery is affected by these LG recalls. If you have an affected battery, including one that has already received a software update, switch it off and contact LG urgently,” Deputy Chair Catriona Lowe said.

“LG has committed to increase its efforts to alert consumers to the safety risk posed by the affected LG batteries and will take steps to remediate or replace the batteries. LG will also provide compensation to consumers for higher energy bills during the period their battery is switched off.”

Consumers urged to switch off affected batteries that previously received a software update

Recently, there was a fire involving an affected LG battery that had been remedied with an LG software update designed to prevent incidents caused by the defect in the batteries.

Investigations are ongoing to determine the cause of the fire and whether the software update failed to work as it should.

“The ACCC is extremely concerned by this development, and we are keeping a close watch. LG is contacting affected customers now to instruct them to switch off their batteries. We urge all consumers who previously had a software update installed to immediately switch off their battery, pending the outcome of these investigations,” Ms Lowe said.

“As part of the undertaking given to the ACCC, LG has agreed to replace these affected batteries or provide refunds to consumers if investigations conclude that a software update is no longer an appropriate remedy. LG will also provide compensation to consumers with these batteries for higher energy bills incurred during the period their battery is switched off.

LG’s undertaking follows a proposal for a compulsory recall

The ACCC had been concerned that LG’s advertising to date was inadequate in alerting consumers to the dangers of these LG batteries. Following ACCC advice provided earlier this year, the Assistant Treasurer issued a proposed recall notice, which is a formal step towards a compulsory recall, due to concerns that LG had not taken satisfactory action to prevent the affected batteries causing injury to any person.

Following this step by the Assistant Treasurer, LG met with the ACCC and offered to make significant additional commitments via a court-enforceable undertaking.

“The undertaking given to the ACCC by LG places comprehensive and court-enforceable obligations on LG to alert consumers and fix their batteries,” Ms Lowe said.

Following the ACCC’s acceptance of the undertaking from LG containing these detailed commitments, the Assistant Treasurer has accepted the ACCC’s recommendation that it is not necessary to issue a compulsory recall notice for the affected LG batteries.

The ACCC may seek orders in the Federal Court to enforce the undertaking if LG fails to comply with the commitments it has made in the undertaking.

What should consumers do?

1. Check or check again if your battery has been recalled

Affected LG batteries may be in other branded systems including SolaX and in unbranded solar energy systems. Visit https://www.lgessbattery.com/au, click on ‘Electrical Safety Recall’ and follow the instructions to find out if your battery is affected by the recall.

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