Flushmate, a division of Sloan Valve Company, has recalled 2.3 million Flushmate III Pressure-Assist Flushing Systems in the U.S., and 9,400 in Canada because the system can burst at or near the vessel weld seam releasing stored pressure. The flushing system is installed inside a toilet tank, and the pressure can lift the lid and shatter the tank.
The company has received 304 reports of the product bursting, resulting in property damage and 14 impact or laceration injuries, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission.
In a pressure-assisted toilet, as water displaces air within the sealed tank, it creates pressure that thrusts waste forcefully out through the bowl. According to Flushmate, pressure-assisted flushing systems can be installed in order to use the pressure from the water supply line to provide the energy needed to complete the flush.
This recall is for Series 503 Flushmate III Pressure Assist flushing systems manufactured from October 1997 to February 2008. The units are rectangular, black, two-piece vessels made of injection molded plastic. The date code/serial number is 16 characters long and located on the label on the top of the Flushmate III. The first six numbers in the series are the date code. The date code range is October 14, 1997 (101497) through February 29, 2008 (022908).
The Flushmate III was sold at Home Depot and Lowe's stores nationwide for about $108, and sold to distributors and plumbing contractors, as well as toilet manufacturers including American Standard, Crane, Eljer, Gerber, Kohler, Mansfield, and St. Thomas.
If you have this unit installed in your toilet tank, you should immediately turn off the water supply and stop using the system. You can also call Flushmate to determine if your serial number is included in the recall and to request a free repair kit.
Although the toilet manufacturers listed above (American Standard, Crane, Eljer, Gerber, Kohler, Mansfield, and St. Thomas) have been in our toilet Ratings, the models in our current Ratings are newer than the period of this recall, which ends in 2008. For more see our toilets buying guide.
Health Canada's press release is available here.