My Acer laptop “caught fire”

A PC Pro reader has been left baffled after his daughter’s Acer laptop inexplicably “caught fire”.

Andrew Whitehead wrote to us after sending the laptop back to Acer’s repair centre for investigation. The company concluded that the damage to the Acer TravelMate 2400 had been caused by some external “direct heat source”, and was his fault – a conclusion he vehemently denies.

“There was no other electrical appliance switched on in the room or indeed anything else which could have caused a fire, such as a candle or cigarette,” Whitehead told PC Pro.

“To our horror we saw the right-hand corner of the laptop screen turning black and the smell [of burning] increasing. I touched the circle of black and burnt my fingers. The silver on the lid of the laptop started turning brown and the silver surface began flaking with smoke coming out of it.”

In a statement sent to PC Pro Acer said: “The unit was fully investigated and a full diagnostics was completed on the customer’s machine. Our investigation concludes that the damage caused was not due to a manufacturing fault and that we suspect the cause was due to an external source. Acer denies any internal manufacturing fault.”

Acer burn

Acer offered to repair the laptop, but Whitehead was rankled by what he perceived to be a suggestion that he “was lying in order to get a new laptop”.

“My daughter is being honest, she had her mother (a university professor) next to her, and her husband, also a university professor in the same room as witnesses. Whilst the incident may be classed as inexplicable by Acer, it is inconceivable that this story has been made up,” said Whitehead.

According to the letters sent to Mr Whitehead by Acer, it is unaware of any other incidents of this kind with its laptops.

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