The Gift That Could Burn Your House Down

Hoverboards are the coolest new gadget and hottest gift this holiday season. Stores can barely keep them in stock. But you might want to wait before trying to make your Back to the Future dreams come true.

According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), there are more than a dozen cases of the lithium ion batteries in various brands of hoverboards catching fires and destroying not only the boards, but whole rooms and even houses.

Today, a local Cary, NC, family told ABC-11 how a Hoverboard purchased at Crabtree Valley Mall exploded and caught fire.

Cindy said she enjoyed the hoverboard for a few days with no problems. On Sunday, during a dinner party at her home, she was charging the device. She says all of a sudden one of the guests noticed something unusual about the hoverboard.

“It started swelling and then smoking and then caught fire. It was like a fireworks show; it exploded,” Cindy said. “Our friend tried to throw water on it which didn’t help because of the lithium battery. My dad grabbed the fire extinguisher and sprayed it and then it lit again. He then sprayed again and while it was still smoking, my dad grabbed it and took it out in the grass and sprayed it again. It continued to smoke for about 20 minutes.”

According to a report by, hoverboard fires have started while the boards where charging, while they were being ridden, or even while sitting idle. According to

Here’s the really scary part: there’s no single reason why these hoverboards are exploding, and there’s no sure-fire way to avoid potential catastrophe if you want to buy one yourself. There’s no particular brand of hoverboard to avoid — they all seem to come from thousands of interchangeable factories in China — or any label on the box that guarantees a product won’t explode.

The best advice right now is to wait to own a hoverboard until all the kinks and bugs have been worked out. While not every board will burst into flames, if yours does, it could ruin your life. Keep your holidays safe!

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