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2.3 million toilet flushing systems recalled because they can explode

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Consumers should check inside the tanks of their toilets for a recalled flushing system that can burst and shatter the tank, potentially causing serious injury.

Flushmate, of New Hudson, MI, is recalling the Flushmate® III Pressure-Assist Flushing System because the pressurized system can burst at or near the vessel weld seam. This release of pressure can lift the tank lid and shatter the tank.

The recall affects 2,330,600 Flushmate® III Pressure-Assist Flushing Systems sold in the United States and another 9,400 sold in Canada. They were manufactured between October 1997 and February 2008.

According to a release by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), consumers have reported 304 instances in which the product failed and burst, causing property damage. In 14 of the cases, people suffered impact or laceration injuries.

The company sold this product for about $108 through Lowes and Home Depot home improvement stores, as well as distributors and pluming contractors. Flushmate also sold the product to toilet manufacturers such as American Standard, Crane, Eljer, Gerber, Kohler, Mansfield and St. Thomas.

Consumers can identify the recalled Flushmate® III Pressure-Assist Flushing System by locating the unit inside the tank. The product is a rectangular, two piece vessel made of black injection molded plastic. They should find the 16-digit serial number on a label affixed to the top of the unit and then determine the date of manufacture by using the first six numerals of the serial number. Recalled units have a date code between 101497 (October 14, 1997) and 022908 (February 29, 2008).

If a consumer determines the flushing system in their tank is included in this recall, they should turn off the water supply to the tank and stop using the system.

Flushmate is offering a free repair kit to consumers who call (800) 303-5123 or visit the Flushmate recall site.