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Why is my hair dryer flashing green inside?
July 6, 2009 6:33 AM   Subscribe

Should I eat use this? Cheapo hair dryer suddenly flashing green light inside. What's going on?

I have this Revlon hair dryer I bought at CVS -- it's "ionic", whatever that means. Lately (like within the last week) I've started noticing bright green flashes inside the hair dryer. During the 3-4 minutes it takes to dry my hair, I'll notice maybe three of them at most. It's not associated with any noise, abnormal heating up, or anything like that. It doesn't shut down, it doesn't actually spark (not that I can feel, anyway), it just flashes. The little hair filter on the back is clean and I can't see anything stuck inside it.

I don't know what the "ionization" is supposed to do, and all I know is I can't turn it completely off -- the little dial that controls it only goes down to "1 lit up orange LED" instead of "3 lit up orange LEDs". I feel like maybe the green flashing has to do with the ionization, but I have no idea.

I've tried googling, but no one else seems to have this green flashy problem. I'm not having the melty case issues other people seem to have in the reviews I can find. I can't even find a product manual to see if this is a sign of some specific failure mode.

I'm very curious about what could be causing this, but I do also worry about how dangerous it might be -- is this thing about to explode?

So tell me, MeFites, what's up with this thing?
posted by olinerd to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (8 answers total)
 
It might have to do with the ionization, but who knows. For peace of mind, return it to CVS and get a different hair dryer.
posted by jerseygirl at 6:45 AM on July 6, 2009


You could try testing out the ionization theory - change the settings for ionization and see if the flashes increase in frequency? Where is it flashing, specifically? From inside the casing? Can you see the light source with a flashlight?
posted by Phire at 6:54 AM on July 6, 2009


I'm sure Revlon has a customer service department you could call to ask directly.
posted by Rendus at 7:57 AM on July 6, 2009 [1 favorite]


Try blowing it out with a can of compressed air - there may be some proto-dust bunny kind of thing in there causing arcing.

It could also be that the brushes in the motor are a bit worn and your getting sparking from that.

I think Rendus has the best advice though.
posted by Kid Charlemagne at 8:58 AM on July 6, 2009


It sounds like electricity arcing across somewhere to me. If it were me I'd stop using it immediately - electricity isn't something to play with - and take it back to where you bought it from.

I could be being paranoid, but after being electrocuted 3 times, I'm a little wary.
posted by Solomon at 9:22 AM on July 6, 2009


After being electrocuted three times, you should be a little dead. Did you mean "shocked"?
posted by dinger at 10:26 AM on July 6, 2009


I think the first question is "is this normal behavior?" Revlon's toll-free number is 1-800-473-8566 (from their contact page). I'd call them and find out.
posted by plinth at 10:31 AM on July 6, 2009


The hairdryer actually petered out on its own a day later, so seems like it was in its lovely green flashy death throes. Thanks for the suggestions, anyway!
posted by olinerd at 4:47 PM on August 21, 2009


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