Parrot Parrot

Teflon Heater Warning from a Visitor

Original warning sent:

“Please, Please warn people about the following product.  My wife and I  recently lost two members of our family.  One was a 4 year old Orange Wing  Amazon, and the other member of my family was a 10 year old Parakeet.  Both in perfect health and happy as can be. One Saturday morning, at 2:30 am, we heard a hallowed squawking sound from Andy, our Orange Wing Amazon.  We found  him at the bottom of his cage, gasping for air.  A minute later, he died in my arms.  Immediately following his death (approximately 2 minutes), my  parakeet passed on as well.  We were dumfounded.  We had not a clue as to  what happened.  We checked for any gas leaks, had the power company come out,  but not a trace of gas.  We later learned that their death was caused by  fumes from an electric heater, purchased to help take the chill out of the air for our dear family members. The quartz heater purchased was a MARVIN  MODEL 5000 QUARTZ HEATER, with Humidifier.  Apparently some of the parts have  been coated with TEFLON, without warning on the packaging.  I will be  contacting the manufacturer soon to voice my displeasure. Please be cautious of electric heaters.”

March 2000 incident report sent on same exact heater!!

“I read the story in amazement about the heater killing the birds, Just two weeks ago I came home from work and found all of my birds dying there was nothing I could do to save them it was a Saturday and by the time I got the Vet. they all had died within 45 minutes. I’ve cried for the past two weeks missing my babies.I had a amazon,a orange wing a conure, and two cockatiels. I could not figure out what we had done wrong we were so careful not to buy any thing that had anything that would hurt our babies, then I read the story about the heater and I had one for my birds too. Please tell everyone not to buy that heater. Its the MARVIN MODEL 5000 QUARTZ. I did send a letter to manufacturer; no response yet.”

ParrotParrot concedes that these are anecdotal reports. We cannot prove this item caused the deaths. However, if this item uses nonstick coatings that have the potential to release PTFE it is very likely the cause of these birds’ death. If the company wants to challenge these statements they should send statements to the effect that the heaters contain no coating or other material that could release PTFE at certain temperatures; this substance has been scientifically proven to cause deaths among birds and cannot be disputed. All manufacturers who use such coatings have an ETHICAL RESPONSIBILITY to note this in their product literature. DuPont has made an effort at reporting this fact in their most recent product literature and I hope other companies will follow their example.

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