Hot water bottles

The mandatory standard for hot water bottles prescribes requirements for the design and construction, performance and labeling.

Hazards

Hot water bottles can cause burns if placed directly on the skin, particularly when not wrapped in a towel or fabric cover. These types of burns are serious and happen gradually. Often the user cannot feel the burn until it is too late.

If misused or manufactured poorly, hot water bottles can leak or burst. If the water is still hot, it can scald the skin causing third degree burns requiring skin grafts.

Mandatory standard

Trade Practices (Consumer Product Safety Standard) Hot Water Bottles Regulations 2008 sets out the mandatory requirements for hot water bottles.

Key requirements

These requirements provide an overview of the mandatory standard. Suppliers must not rely on this information as a complete guide to compliance.

Performance

Under the mandatory standard hot water bottles manufactured from rubber and PVC must meet performance requirements for:

  • structural integrity
  • stopper leakage
  • strength of seams
  • pressure resistance tests.

Labelling

The mandatory standard requires hot water bottles manufactured from rubber and PVC to provide warnings on bottle and packaging. Some of the warnings include:

  • 'Do not use boiling water'.
  • 'WARNING - HOT WATER BOTTLES CAN CAUSE BURNS.  AVOID PROLONGED DIRECT CONTACT WITH THE SKIN.'

Testing

While the mandatory standard includes some features you can visually check, it also specifies testing to ensure hot water bottles meet requirements for design, construction and performance. Suppliers need to organise testing through specialist laboratories.

Does this apply to your business?

Under the Australian Consumer Law supply includes:

  • in relation to goods - (including re-supply) by way of sale, exchange, lease, hire or hire-purchase
  • in relation to services - provide, grant or confer.

This ban applies to anyone in the business of supplying this product, including:

  • manufacturers
  • importers
  • distributors
  • retailers
  • hirers.

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