Fake projector lamps pose fire risk, warns Optoma9 September 2014
Following Optoma’s warning a few months ago about non-genuine projector lamp modules, the company’s technical team has been investigating the materials used in their manufacture and has discovered these represent a real fire risk. Optoma is reinforcing its warning for customers to be vigilant against non-genuine lamps.
Roy Stonebank, Optoma’s general manager – service, said: “There have only been a few cases but we are taking these extremely seriously because of the potentially catastrophic consequences they could cause.”
Buying a lamp can be confusing as there are a number of companies claiming to sell genuine original lamps. These companies base their claim to be “genuine original” upon the logic that the light bulb alone is the same as in an Optoma lamp module.
However, a lamp module is made up of two parts – the bulb and the bulb holder. Optoma stresses that it is important to ensure that both bulb and bulb holder are Optoma originals. The bulb holder is the key to performance and safety.
Stonebank said: “We have observed the damage caused to projectors which have been fitted with non-genuine lamp modules, even those with ‘original’ bulbs. This includes internal lenses that have melted due to incorrectly fitted UV filters, some of which have been shown to have sub-standard coating within the non-genuine lamps modules. This sub-standard coating allows UV rays to enter the optical engine and DMD Chip, burning the optics.”
The technical team also found internal cables to be of poor quality and an incorrect length. Having wiring too tight could cause a hot spot within the lamp housing and would be a fire risk.
Another concern with non-genuine lamp modules is the material used for the rubber shield at the rear of the lamp modules. Testing shows these modules could not only do irreparable damage to the projector, but could also potentially cause a fire in the office or home.
Stonebank said: “The non-Optoma lamp modules may be cheaper in some cases but this is often due to cheaper components that have not been rigorously tested inside the projectors.
“We strongly recommend that customers fit only Optoma lamp modules into Optoma projectors and check that they have a genuine lamp module. Lamp modules supplied by Optoma and its authorised distributors are designed and tested to work specifically with its projectors, ensuring high-quality performance and longevity.”
Customers can check that lamp modules are genuine by visiting www.optoma.co.uk/lampgenuinecheck.aspx Alternatively, they can email the UK-based customer service helpline on firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone +44 (0)1923 691 865.
Stonebank added: “All genuine Optoma lamp modules carry a tamper resistant sticker. If the lamp module packaging does not carry this sticker, or the seal is broken or damaged, it may be a fake. Another thing to consider is that repairs resulting from damage caused by a non-genuine copy lamp module would not be covered under the projector’s warranty.”