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Toro Recalls 17,000 IC Irrigation Controllers

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Recall Date:
September 18, 1985

Recall Details

September 18, 1985  
Release # 85-045

Washington, D.C. -- In cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). The Toro Company, Minneapolis, Minnesota, today announced the recall of 17,000 IC series irrigation controllers (four models including the IC4, ICOD, IC8 or IC12). The Toro Company has learned that under certain conditions, the end cap of the capacitor in the controller may fail or burst abrupt, scattering tinfoil and paper debris which could cause eye injury.

Toro has received four failure reports in 1983 and 1984, which resulted in two non-permanent eye injuries of corneal abrasion. A large capacitor in the irrigation controller's printed circuit board can fail if the heat sink and the battery connector inadvertently touch each other causing a short circuit. These incidents can occur while the user or servicing person is standing in front of the controller with the door open and cover removed.

The Toro IC irrigation controllers are UL listed electronic devices which can be programmed to operate automatic lawn sprinkling systems. The product was marketed nationwide in 1982 and 1983, primarily through irrigation system professional contractors and some retail outlets. Of the 38,752 controllers manufactured which present this problem; approximately 31,000 units were sold and installed in homes and businesses.

Approximately 14,000 of the 31,000 units sold have already been modified or the owners have been notified of the problem. In addition, Toro has notified over 11,000 professional contractors. 17,000 units have not yet been modified.

The recall controllers can be identified on the plastic cover as a Toro IC4, IC4D, IC8, or IC12, and by the model/serial number decal on the bottom of the unit. The affected model/serial numbers are:

Model No.Serial No.
104-06-04 002739 through 002747
  010511 through 028551
104-06-06 001501 through 011261
108-06-05 000603 through 012631
112-06-06 000224 through 008818


Owners who have questions or who identify their controller as being recalled should call Toro at 714/688-9221, or may write to the Customer Service Department --The Toro Company, Irrigation Division, 5825 Jasmine Street, Riverside, California 92504. Toro will make arrangements to have units subject to the recall modified at no cost to owners. Toro also advises owners to disregard this recall notice if their unit has already been modified.

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About the U.S. CPSC
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is charged with protecting the public from unreasonable risks of injury or death associated with the use of thousands of types of consumer products. Deaths, injuries, and property damage from consumer product incidents cost the nation more than $1 trillion annually. CPSC’s work to ensure the safety of consumer products has contributed to a decline in the rate of deaths and injuries associated with consumer products over the past 40 years. Federal law bars any person from selling products subject to a publicly announced voluntary recall by a manufacturer or a mandatory recall ordered by the Commission.
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