PSA If you bought a solar-powered patio umbrella from Costco between December 2020 and May 2022, you should probably stop using it right now. A recall alert has been issued for over 400,000 of the SunVilla devices in the US and Canada following reports of them overheating and catching fire.
The US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has issued the recall for the SunVilla 10-foot Solar LED Market Umbrella sold exclusively at Costco warehouse and the retailer's website for between $130 and $160. The umbrellas feature a series of LEDs along the arms and a black solar panel battery puck containing a lithium-ion battery on the top.
The recall notice advises owners to stop using the umbrellas and store the puck, which comes with a black cover marked with "YEEZE" or "YEEZE 1," out of the sun and away from combustible material. It also warns against charging the puck with the AC adaptor.
The CSPC writes that the lithium-ion batteries in the solar panels can overheat, posing fire and burn hazards. In the US, there have already been three reports of solar panels catching fire while charging via the AC adapter while indoors, two reports of umbrellas catching fire when the solar panel puck overheated and caught fire while attached to the umbrella, and one smoke inhalation injury. SunVilla received one report of a battery overheating, causing an umbrella to catch fire, in Canada, though there have been no reports of injuries in the country.
If you're one of the 400,000 people who bought one of these umbrellas in the United States (or the ~33,000 in Canada), you can return it to any Costco Warehouse for a full refund.