Famous Manufacturing Defects, manufacturing defect example, what is a manufacturing defect

Customers expect the products they purchase to be safe, especially from well-known brands. They usually don’t think about the potential risks and dangers of the products and the different stages involved in their creation. It is the responsibility of the companies involved in the production process to ensure the safety of their products.

There are three main stages involved in creating and selling a product: design, manufacturing, and distribution. Each stage is equally important, but manufacturing is generally considered the most complex and risky stage.

Several things could go wrong in this stage and lead to defects, resulting in injuries, property damage and lawsuits. Every manufacturer must do their best to avoid manufacturing defects, but errors always occur without a warning.

A manufacturing defect is any error or defect in the product that occurs during the manufacturing stage. Manufacturing defects have shaken up many famous companies and led to huge amounts of financial loss.

Hence, this article will highlight famous manufacturing defects and why every manufacturing company needs insurance before it’s too late.

Famous Manufacturing Defect Examples

Takata Airbags Explosions

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Customers trust automobile companies with their lives when they use their products daily. Everyone expects a new car, including the brand itself, to be safe and defect-free. Unfortunately, this was not the case around 2002 till 2015.

Takata is a famous Japanese brand that develops, manufactures and sells automobile safety products to car brands worldwide. They were a trusted brand until their airbag defect disaster. Sixty-seven million airbags had to be recalled by the end of 2022, as they exploded when drivers needed them the most. 

The defective airbags were installed in international car brands, including BMW, Toyota, Volkswagen, Honda and more. The main issue was due to the airbag’s inflator, a metal cartridge containing propellant parts that ignited with explosive force due to the high heat and humidity. The explosion caused several injuries and, sadly, deaths.

The defect was due to the lack of quality testing and material/gas choice without considering the different environments the cars will be used in. All the affected brands in the automobile industry took action against Takata and demanded compensation for their loss. 

The brand is still recovering from the reputation damage and financial loss due to the famous manufacturing defect. 

Stanley Cup’s Lead Secret

Manufacturers must analyse all their processes and material choices to ensure they are safe for the end user. Some materials and paint must be avoided due to their toxic factors. Unfortunately, there are incidents where manufacturers use poisonous materials like lead accidentally or to make the product more durable. 

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Recently, experts discovered that the famous product Stanley Cups contains lead. The product is used by millions and shocked all customers and competitors. The company admitted that the manufacturing process involves lead, and the toxic material may be released into the cup if the product is damaged.

Hence, if a consumer drops their cup even once, they may be exposed to lead and fall seriously ill. The brand is now dealing with many lawsuits and loss of sales as they did not warn customers. A once famous coffee cup brand is now just known for its lawsuits.

Hoverboards on Fire

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There are some products that shock the world with their futuristic design and function. These products seem like props from a sci-fi movie. One of these products included the hoverboard that launched in 2014/2015. However, the popular product craze soon turned into fear due to the famous manufacturing defect.

Hoverboards are self-balancing electronic scooters controlled by the user leaning slightly forward or backward. The product made moving around easy and cool until it caught fire. Most hoverboards use lithium batteries that quickly overheat and develop into possible fires.

Some of the hoverboards exploded while charging and riding and also while not even being used. The overheating battery was a manufacturing defect due to the lack of risk assessment, experiments and battery material. The defect resulted in several injuries and property damage, including home fires.

Manufacturers must test products for months before release to avoid such defects and lawsuits. No matter how futuristic a product is, it is never worth injuries, death and damage.

Sriracha Sauce Exploding 

Businesses must be extra careful when manufacturing and packing food. Food products can easily become poisonous due to manufacturing contamination, packaging or lack of testing.

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Product exploding is typically linked to technology products. However, there are rare instances when a food product may explode, as proved by the famous brand Sriracha. In 2019, Sriracha announced a recall because the 502ml and 828ml bottles were surprisingly exploding when opened

The manufacturing defect was due to the build-up of lactic acid while filling the bottle and the lack of testing. The famous manufacturing defect can cause injuries from the hot sauce entering the eyes.

Manufacturing defects could occur in any product and result in surprising outcomes. There are many other cases where famous products have been contaminated with insects or toxic materials.

Unstable Ikea Malm Dressers

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One of the common manufacturing defects is errors in installation and assembly. The error results in the product missing a component or not correctly attached. However, what if the element was not in the design and the manufacturer didn’t test the product as the designer intended? 

Ikea has gone through a horrible lawsuit due to one of their dressers not being stable enough. The family assembled the unstable dresser in the nursery, which unfortunately fell and killed a child. After an investigation, experts revealed the fall was due to the design and lack of manufacturing testing.

Ikea admitted the product would be safe if the wall mounting pieces were provided and compensated the family US$ 50 million. The company recalled 8 million Malm dressers due to the famous manufacturing defect.

Ikea is a brand that designs and manufactures its own product, which means it is liable to test the product and fix the design when manufacturing.

Why Is Insurance A Must to Recover from Manufacturing Defects?

Manufacturing defects can be a major problem for any manufacturing company or product brand. The consequences of a product defect lawsuit can be severe, resulting in financial loss, reputation damage, and more.

Therefore, product businesses need to be prepared for such incidents, regardless of how unlikely they may seem. The best way to protect against product defects is to have the appropriate combination of product insurance policies.

Every business designing, manufacturing, or selling products should have product liability insurance.

Product liability insurance covers the costs associated with product defect claims, including legal fees, compensation, and settlement costs. This insurance helps businesses recover from even the worst claims and fairly compensate the affected parties.

In addition to product liability insurance, product brands should also purchase product recall insurance. This insurance covers the costs associated with recalling products due to a defect, such as shipping, communication, storage, and disposal costs.

Combining the two insurance can cover any scale of defects, including the famous manufacturing defects.



To Learn More about manufacturing product insurance and cover manufacturing defects in Hong Kong and Asia, contact Red Asia Insurance.