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Bose recalls subwoofer bass modules over fire risk

Bose Acoustimass 6 Series V Home Theater Speaker System - Black
Image used with permission by copyright holder

It’s not a good day for Bose — the company has just announced a recall of over 1 million bass modules that it sold from January 1994 through April 2007 in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico. These modules, or subwoofers, carry a risk of electrical component failure that poses a fire hazard, according to the official recall notice from the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).

The bass modules were sold as part of Bose’s Acoustimass, Lifestyle, and Companion home theater systems, which were home-theater-in-a-box sets that included a variety of passive, wired speakers along with the powered bass module. If your Bose system looks similar to the one pictured above, there’s a good chance it’s included in the recall.

Don’t forget, Bose also made these units in white, so if your system isn’t black, that doesn’t mean you’re out of the woods.

Bose SoundTouch Stereo JC Acoustimass and Jewel Cube system in white. Image used with permission by copyright holder

While it’s not like these modules have been causing homes to spontaneously burn to the ground, there have been enough incidents reported to Bose that the company felt a recall was warranted. There have been 21 reports worldwide of the bass modules igniting or melting, according to the CPSC, including three incidents of fires resulting in property damage to carpeting, an entertainment cabinet, and to materials surrounding the bass box. Thankfully, no injuries have been reported.

The CPSC recall notice has a long list of the affected products, but you may find it easier to use the recall page that Bose has created, which will walk you through the process of finding your product’s name, serial number, and manufacture date code. If it turns out your product is among the affected units, Bose advises that you stop using it immediately and do not plug it in or reconnect it to electrical power.

At this point, you have two options. Bose is offering to let you send in your bass module and it will repair it free of charge. Or, if you find yourself wondering if maybe this is a good excuse to upgrade to a newer Bose system — perhaps a Bose Smart Soundbar 900 with Dolby Atmos — you can return the recalled bass module and get a 40% discount on a new Bose soundbar.

Bose’s recall page also lets you begin a self-serve return process for some of the affected bass modules, however, for other affected units, you’ll have to get in touch with Bose directly.

Simon Cohen
Contributing Editor, A/V
Simon Cohen covers a variety of consumer technologies, but has a special interest in audio and video products, like…
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