Apple has launched an exchange programme for the 5W European USB power adaptor shipped with older models of the iPhone, warning that "in rare cases" the adaptor could overheat and pose a safety risk.
The adaptor came with iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S models shipped from October 2009 to September 2012 in 37 countries — a number of European countries plus Russia, India, Israel and others. The adaptor was also sold as a standalone accessory.
Apple said it will exchange every affected power adapter for a new, redesigned adapter free of charge, and customers should exchange any affected adaptor for a new one as soon as possible.
The affected adapter can be identified by its model number and the colour of the letters "CE": the adapters are Model A1300 and the letters "CE" appear in solid grey. More detail on the programme can be found here.
"If you have an affected adapter, discontinue use and exchange it for a new one. You can charge your iPhone by connecting it via a USB cable to your computer until you receive a replacement adapter," the company said.
Other Apple 5W USB power adapters are not affected. A redesigned adapter, which features Model A1400 and the letters "CE" outlined in grey, does not need to be exchanged, according to Apple.
Customers should take the affected adapters either to an Apple store or an Apple authorised service provider. They'll also need to take their iPhone with them, as Apple will verify the iPhone serial number as part of the exchange process.
Those unable to take the adaptor to one of the locations can contact Apple Technical Support to arrange for an exchange. Anyone who's paid for a replacement adaptor because of the problem should get in contact about a refund, Apple said.
The countries where the adaptor was sold are: Albania, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Egypt, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Israel, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Vietnam. More details can be found on the Apple website here.