One Customer at a Time


It’s me again. I just talked to J.B. Johnson, Dell’s program manager for the battery recall, and I wanted to provide an update on how we're taking care of our affected customers.

When the announcement went out last night, the phones started ringing. J.B. and her team were handling 500 calls every 30 minutes until midnight (CT). The volumes decreased overnight, but calls are ramping as I write this post. We expect the highest call volume for the recall to be between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. (all time zones) today. Call now and you may find that we’ve maxed out our trunk line—if this is the case you will be redirected to our battery recall web site where there is no wait.

Roughly 33,000 customers are accessing our website at a time right now. This is only about 8 percent of our capacity so performance is excellent. We have had 15.4 million folks access the website since it went live last night. One of my friends called this morning and has a recalled battery—I sent him directly to the website for quick resolution. That’s my best advice to any of you who need a replacement battery.

As of 11 a.m. this morning we have taken 84,000 orders, worldwide. The first replacement batteries will go out today. The team made sure every available battery was boxed and ready to go so we can minimize the inconvenience for our customers.

This is a global recall: our Asia team hit the ground running with the announcement. My colleagues in Dell Europe were sleeping during the announcement, but they are full-speed ahead now.

Based on early customer feedback, we are increasing the prominence of our recall links on to ensure customers can easily find the recall website. There also has been some confusion about whether to input “O” or “0” (zero) into the battery ID tool on the website. The answer is always use “Zeros.”  CORRECTION: Please see updated blog post about entering the battery ID number. We are clarifying this on the website and working on an automated solution, as well.

Finally, 2,000 people called before the recall website was live, and we are calling each of them today.

Despite the size of this recall, things are going smoothly now. We have a long way to go, but I am proud of J.B. and her team and all of my colleagues working on this around the world. We’ll keep cranking.

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15 thoughts on “One Customer at a Time

  1. The phone on the battery recall says go to the website; but the website hasn’t worked all day.  seems like Dell would want to know that right now there is NO way of obtaining the infomation being sought.  

  2. This is great Lionel, for those that are dealing with this issue.

    However, why wasn’t something similar to this done with the XPS 700 fiasco? I do hope in the future that this resolution becomes the standard for customer/company relations, especially if there is a 3 month delay in getting computers that have been advertised since May 31st shipped.

  3. Great job Dell. I know this is a huge undertaking on your part, but I think it really needs to be done. To those of you who continue to say that all day today the website has been down, that is not true. It has been up all night and day. make sure you are going to the right address,, I know that some of the links in the blog aren’t working, but the website is still there. Just type the URL in and there you go. As always, keep up the great work Dell.

    -CR Hiestand

  4. So if i have one of your defective inspiron 5100s and the battery causes it to burn will you replace the hardware too?  

  5. Hi Michael, the Inspiron 5100 is not part of this recall.  If you have a specific issue with your system, you can e-mail the support team here.

  6. They need to fixed the program for entering the serial numbers.

    If you type any number, it will come back saying your batteries are good. Try it – enter just all "1"s. It should come back, not valid number.

  7. Good thinking Brian, its not like you could have moved since your laptop was delivered, changed your phonenumber or sold the system to someone else. Yes, the way to go about it for Dell is clearly to just dispatch 4.1 million batteries, cross their fingers and hope the original customer contact information is still valid.

  8. It is very difficult to find the battery recall notice when you go to  I just purchased a Dell for my college freshman and when I told him to go to the website to check his battery, he said he couldn’t find the information.  

    Put it in big headlines on the first page of the web page and make it easier on us.  Thank you.

  9. Is there an automated way to detect bad batteries- or at least Sony, to help narrow it down?

    We have a few hundred users and I’m not looking forward to visiting them in person to verify their battery.  (And no, I’m not going to trust them to check it for themselves.)

  10. What about the XPS m140? Shortly after I bought it, they changed the number of the model – I think to Inspiron E1405 but I’m not sure.  Will dell be contacting the people who bought the systems which are affected by the recall?  

  11. Lay off them, man. Dell has always been depending on suppliers for stock.

    I’m sure the battery is manufactured by one of the suppliers. This is a supplier issue and Dell is just taking care of their customers by recalling the batteries and replacing them FOC. Don’t know many other manufacturers that have the guts to admit that and spend millions of dollars in the interest of customers safety.

    Most companies wouldn’t own up due to the sheer scale and money involved.

    props to dell for this one.

  12. Donlab,

    I noticed the same thing.  My batteries are on the recall list, but when I input them (with zeroes, not ‘O’s), I get back that they are all good.  So I tried what you did, and now I don’t trust the site.

    Dell folks, can you please explain why batteries within the mentioned model numbers may not need to be recalled?  How are you able to determine this?  I have 40 batteries here and I don’t want to give them back if there’s just a small error or miscommunication somewhere.

  13. I received my replacement battery today and mailed back the defective in the same box. Return label and tape were included in the shipment. Couldn’t have been a smoother swap-out.

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