After a recently purchased Philips Hue White bulb died on me this past week I went about contacting the Philips Hue support team to identify the fault and/or replacement. After a fortnight of different support channels (website, Facebook, phone, e-mail…) my local Philips Lighting supplier – Philips Lighting Australia Ltd. – declined a replacement and pointed me to the Philips Lighting US team.
Here’s what I learned and why I now have two Philips Hue White bulbs gathering dust due to the potential of a safety risk… not cool Philips Lighting.
First off, if you have been “silly” enough to purchase Philips Hue bulbs from Amazon.com or another US-based online marketplace and had products sent internationally where 110 VAC electricity is not used (e.g. everywhere) stop using those products and contact the Philips Lighting US team for a replacement.
Here’s the interaction with my local Philips Lighting team:
From the markings it looks to be a US bulb. These would run on 110v and not 240v and therefore and not usable outside of the US. It would be best for you to check all bulbs for the voltage range printed on the bulbs and if it does not say 220-240v you should stop using them as it could have the potential of a safety risk.
Unfortunately this would also mean that we could not replace them under warranty since we accept claims/complaints only for products sold by us in Australia.
– Customer Order Manager, Philips Lighting Australia Ltd
- Philips Lighting teams will only accept claims/warranties for products sold by their company in that given country (e.g. a purchase from Philips Lighting DE (via Amazon.de) will not replaced by Philips Lighting AU).
- Philips Lighting teams have no trade or direct contact with other teams. You as a consumer must reach out to the Philips Lighting team where your product was purchased (e.g. in my case buying from Amazon.com means the US team and track them down).
- The Philips Lighting US team (e.g. the official Philips Lighting US team selling on Amazon.com) are aware that customers are using their 110v-only products internationally and not informing customers or restricting international sales knowing of the potential safety risk when using their products in non-110v markets.
The first two points I understand. The last riles me up and is reason for this Post. Lift your game Philips Lighting and offer a single dual-voltage unit!
Knowing the above I now source Philips Hue products from local suppliers, currently Apple.com/au/… are the cheapest online retailer with free shipping and they have confirmed via pre-sales support to only sell international Philips Hue products rated for 220-240V at 50/60Hz and safe for use in non-US markets. I have since purchased multiple bulbs from Apple.com/au/… and all have been internationally rated.
I would like to return my Philips Hue White US-bulbs (without replacement or refund) as I have no further use for them.
7 thoughts on “Safety warning regarding Philips Hue bulbs used internationally and sourced from the US”
This is a little side line but do you know where I can find 220/240 Volt Philip traditional LED bulbs…I too live in an international market….The Caribbean….
Hi Jiggsaww, have you looked at the European Amazon? Here in Australia the Apple Shop was the cheapest after delivery.
NO, sorry, you screwed up. This isn’t Philips’ fault.
Most of the electronics you buy on the NA Amazon site are going to be meant for the NA market, and I’m quite sure there won’t be warnings.
Thanks for dropping a comment, you’re ofcourse right that items listed on Amazon.com are destined for the NA market.
Where I and others have gone wrong is assume that the Dutch electronics company would cater for all markets in a single device (100/110V-220/240V) as they do across the rest of their traditional and smart LED bulb range.
I bought Hue White and color ambiance Starter kit E26, sensor, dimming kit (remote), extra A19 bulbs from Amazon, USA. Also bought various dimmable Philips LED bulbs from Amazon to use in 220v AC country.
Yet I did not install or start using any of those as my new home is not ready. Just unpack to see the products. But all packaging are in fresh condition. I bought those in December 2016.
Before buying I read many consumer comments/experience those made my belief that I can use these in 220V AC. All bulbs has a print over it as 110-130V ac 50/60Hz
But now I think it will not safe. How can I back the products to Amazon or Philips?
Did you seriously think Philips Australia is going to offer a global warranty for a US light bulb?
By the way, many appliances are dual voltage even if they are not marked as so. It is obviously cheaper to make one dual voltage product and sell it across the globe than to making two voltage variants.
Hi NepgearGo, did I seriously think Philips offered a global warranty for their smart bulbs… sure!
Many electronics companies offer global warranties for their products – I’m using a Dell laptop and monitors that can and have been serviced anywhere in the world – so it’s not a huge ask for a replacement on new near electronics; these bulbs were only recently installed.
Had Philips made a single dual voltage product then I would have been a happy camper. It wasn’t until I was asked by the AU support team to check for the “220-240V at 50/60Hz” marker that I understood that US-units cannot be used outside of that market and the safety risk of continuing to use that product.