CHARLOTTE — Some people say their stoves turn on too easily. They say the knobs are so sensitive that they, their children or even their pets may bump them and unknowingly turn them on.
Action 9′s Jason Stoogenke has been investigating this safety issue since 2019. Now, he noticed some customers taking action. They filed lawsuits, including class action ones, against some of the biggest manufacturers for this exact issue.
Stoogenke came across five lawsuits the last eight months that involve several common brands such as GE, Samsung and the Whirlpool family, which includes Amana, JennAir, KitchenAid, Maytag and others.
The plaintiffs make similar claims. For example, one says the stove knobs “turned to the ‘on’ position with the slightest touch, bump, or brush.”
Three plaintiffs say their stove knobs led to fires.
Two of the cases settled.
The other three are or were class action lawsuits, which means the plaintiffs are asking the judge to make them class actions so other customers in the same situation can be included, including customers in the Carolinas.
Stoogenke reached out to all three companies named in the lawsuits.
Samsung did not respond in time for this report.
GE said it would not comment on pending legislation.
Whirlpool emailed the following statement: “Whirlpool Corporation strongly disagrees with the allegations made in this lawsuit. The knobs on our ranges and stoves are both safe and meet the operational requirements laid out in the Americans with Disabilities Act. Whirlpool Corporation has a long history of prioritizing consumer safety, and our appliances are designed and tested to leading industry standards. The company will respond accordingly to the lawsuit, and we encourage anyone who has questions about their appliance to reach out to us at 866-698-2538.”
In the meantime, if you are worried about your stove, you can buy covers for your stove knobs. Many cost less than $20 for a set of five or six.
Stoogenke also found a company that makes replacement knobs, RangeSafe. He tested the replacement knobs, and they work. But they do cost more running about $30 for each stove knob.
Action 9 doesn’t usually endorse products, but we are dealing with a potential safety issue.
And it’s always a good reminder to have working smoke detectors in your home.
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