Consumer Alert

Are Your Holiday Electronics Certified?

The holiday season is full of hustle and bustle as shoppers get ready for holiday festivities. Whether you are decorating your house, cooking holiday meals, or buying gifts, it is likely that you will use or purchase a consumer electrical product. When decorating your house, buying the latest video gaming machine, or getting a new pre-lit Christmas tree, the Consumer Protection Unit of the Department of Law reminds you to make sure the electrical products you purchase are properly certified. Proper certification ensures that the electrical products you buy have met specific safety standards which can reduce the risk of an electrical fire.

Alaska law requires that all consumer electrical products be certified by an approved third-party certification program. A consumer electrical product means a product that is marketed for and commonly purchased by the general public and operates, or has a component part that operates, on 110 volts AC or higher. Underwriters Laboratories, Inc. or "UL" is the most common certification used on most consumer electrical products in the United States. There are other certification programs that also meet the requirements under Alaska law. The certification must be clearly marked on the package.

If you have any questions or concerns about whether the electrical product you purchase is properly certified, check with your retailer and don't be afraid to ask questions about proper certification. You can also file a complaint with this office by following the links on our home page to "file a complaint."

For other holiday shopping tips, visit:

Holiday Shopping: Is a Sale Price Your Best Deal?

Shopping by Phone or Mail

Buying, Giving, and Using Gift Cards

Have a happy and safe holiday!

Consumer Protection Unit
December 2006