Dell has warned that around 38,000 power adaptors it shipped between December 2003 and May 2004 could cause electric shocks.
The problematic product is an Auto/Air Adaptor accessory offered alongside a number of Latitude, Inspiron and Precision notebooks between those dates.
According to Dell, the adaptor was sold with the Latitude X300, D400, D500, D505, D600 and D800, the Inspiron 300m, 500m, 510M, 600m, I8500, I8600 and the Precision M60.
The adaptor was also sold separately. It can be recognised by the words "DELL" and "Dell P/N W1451" printed on the top of the adaptors.
At issue is the use of the adaptor with third-party power cables. Says Dell: "It is possible for a consumer to plug into the adaptor certain power cords not intended for use with it, which could pose a shock hazard."
However, no one has yet reported such an injury, the company added.
Dell said it has developed a small unit with connects to the adaptor and prevents it being used with industry standard power cables as well as the original cables shipped with the Auto/Air Adaptor. Dell will send out new cables and the attachment unit free of charge.
"Until they receive and implement their retrofit kit, customers should not connect any power cable to the adapter other than the cables that were provided with the product at the time of purchase," the PC giant warned.
Dell said it is contacting customers, but has set up a range of international numbers for concerned buyers to call to obtain more information. This list of numbers can be found here. ®