If your Dell Latitude E6430u laptop smells more like a litter box than a computer, you may be entitled to a replacement. Dell has been issuing new machines to customers after complaints of a cat urine scent in keyboards rendered the computers nearly unusable (Photo: Creative Commons)
If your Dell Latitude E6430u laptop smells more like a litter box than a computer, you may be entitled to a replacement. Dell has been issuing new machines to customers after complaints of a cat urine scent in keyboards rendered the computers nearly unusable (Photo: Creative Commons)

Dell laptops that smell like cat urine? Though it may sound like some kind of Halloween prank, owners of the Dell Latitude E6430u computers aren't laughing. It seems a number of customers who purchased the Dell laptops earlier this year complained on a support forum of the machines stinking of cat piss. The first reports of pee-scented Dell laptops surfaced back in June of 2013 when user, Three West, posted this message on a Dell customer service forum.

"So a few weeks ago I got a new Latitude 6430u for work. The machine is great, but it smells as if it was assembled near a tomcats litter box. It is truly awful! It seems to be coming from the keyboard. Anybody got any advice on removing the smell?"

While a customer service representative for Dell suggested Three West "remove the keyboard and try to clean it with a soft cloth" or "use a can of compressed air to clean the Keyboard area," according to the customer, neither of the methods worked to removed the horrific scent of cat urine emanating from his Dell Latitude 6430u laptop.

"No amount of compressed air is going to help the awful stench coming from the keyboard," said Three West. "I'm not sure I can live with this smell for the life of the machine."

Soon after Three West posted his complaint, other users came forward to share similar experiences with the disgusting cat piss scented keyboards, some even fearing it could signal a chemical hazard.

"Same experience," posted hotecha. "I thought for sure one of my cats sprayed it, but there was something faulty with it so I had it replaced. The next one had the same exact issue. It's embarrassing taking it to clients because it smells so bad."

"I am having the same issue," shared gambit29. "When I started using the laptop at the end of last week I thought I smelt something odd. Well.. here I am Sunday doing some work on the couch and my wife says "what stinks like cat pee". I said.. I think its this laptop.. puts her nose up to the keyboard and BAM! It really stinks."

"Unfortunately same problem here ... I'm the second one in our company with this problem, cleaning is not possible, it doesn't go away. Mine is on its way to Dell now to replace keyboard and palm-rest. The smell isn't coming from the fan on below, but definitely from the palm-rests," added Richard.

A few months after these initial reports of cat urine smells emanating from Dell laptops came through, another user, Malioz, speculated that the cause of the problem could be to do with the polymer used in the laptop plastics. Concerned about possible health hazards, he asked whether chemicals causing the cat pee smell could be harmful.

At that point Dell made a decision to act, investigating possible causes of the cat pee smell inside of its Latitude 6430u laptops. During the investigation, the cause of the problem seems to have been discovered. Though Dell has not disclosed what the actual problem was causing the terrible cat litter box smell, a customer service representative did share on the Dell forum that, "The smell is not related to cat urine or any other type of biological contaminant, nor is it a health hazard." According to The Guardian, the smell was narrowed down to a manufacturing issue, which was resolved in October.

Meanwhile, for those Dell laptop users who have been afflicted by the horrible cat pee smell in their laptops, the company advises they turn the machines in for a replacement.

"If you order an E6430u now, it will not have the issue," said a customer service representative inside a Dell forum

WATCH: Dell Latitude 6430u Laptop Review


 

Did you experience the cat urine smell in your Dell Latitude E6430u laptop? Share you experience in the comments below.