Even with magnifying glasses being replaced by smartphone cameras, a child can tell you what happens when light shines through a focusing lens: a basic science experiment that the creators of this recalled bird bath appear to have forgotten.
Today the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission issued an official recall for the Backyard Nature Products Bird’s Choice Hanging and Pole-Mounted Acrylic Bird Baths which were sold in “red, yellow and clear colors” at everywhere from Target to Walmart to Amazon.
As you probably guessed, the reason for the recall is that sunlight passing through the bird bath’s acrylic surfaces can be focused onto nearby wooden surfaces—like a backyard deck, a house’s siding, or even furniture—causing the wood to overheat and potentially burn. To date, the USCPSC has received two reports of the bird baths “causing overheating, smoking, fire and scorching to homes’ decking and siding” but, thankfully, no injuries were reported with either incident.
The recall affects an estimated 500 units, and it’s recommended that consumers stop using the bird baths immediately and reach out to Backyard Nature Products (either by phone at 1-800-817-8833, email, or through a dedicated page on the company’s website). The company will provide customers with full refunds as well as pre-paid shipping labels so they can return the bird baths. The USCPSC website has a complete listing of which models have been recalled based on the UPC codes included on the product packaging, but for those who’ve already discarded the packaging, it should be easy to tell if their bird bath has been recalled. Does it look like a giant decorative magnifying glass? If so, then get it out of the sun immediately.