NEW YORK (AP) — A noxious feline odor has some Dell customers caterwauling.
People who own Dell Latitude 6430u laptops are complaining that their pricey new computers are emitting a smell similar to cat urine. Some of them said on the company’s online customer forums that the odor seemed to be coming from the keyboard or palm rest.
The company originally advised buyers through its forums to try cleaning their keyboards with a soft cloth or compressed air, but the smell persisted.
“The machine is great, but it smells as if it was assembled near a tomcat’s litter box,” wrote a customer on a Dell forum in June. “It is truly awful!”
Wednesday, another customer wrote that he felt terrible for repeatedly scolding his cat Jerry, because he thought the elderly cat kept spraying the computer.
Dell said Thursday that its investigation revealed strange scent is related to a manufacturing process, which the company has since fixed. But if your portable PC isn’t purrfect, Dell recommends contacting the company’s technical support team to have your laptop’s palm rest assembly replaced.
Company spokesman David Frink said the odor isn’t related to a “biological contamination” and doesn’t present a health hazard. He added that newly assembled laptops that are currently in stores aren’t affected.
The laptops in question are ultrabooks designed for business use. The base model starts at $900 on Dell’s website, but Dell charges close to $1,300 for higher-end versions that include Windows 8 and Intel Core i5 processors.
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