Test-Achats examined 51 cheap models of USB chargers and found that one in two were not compliant with safety standards and risked causing fires and electrocutions, the consumer protection agency warned on Thursday. It called on the Department of Economic Affairs to take measures to correct this.
The chargers tested included both originals and low-cost imitations. They were all subjected to electric safety tests consisting of a visual inspection and a practical compliance test done in a laboratory.
Test-Achats feels too many risky chargers are on the market, particularly those made for Apple products. “In this category, four out of five low-cost chargers do not meet the requirements,” the association said. “For universal chargers, 40% are non-compliant. For Samsung and related brands, it’s (only) one in four.”
The association stressed that 24 of the 25 risky chargers had an EC label.
The defects the testers found were: non-compliant or low-quality inputs; insufficient isolation of wires; and insufficient distance between primary and secondary circuits, which could cause short-circuiting, overheating, melting of components and therefore, fires as well as electrocution, Test-Achats noted.