NZXT halts sale of H1 PC case for second time as long-term fire hazard fix is developed

 NZXT H1 PC case
(Image credit: NZXT)

NZXT is halting sales of its H1 Mini-ITX PC case, the second time it's had to do so in its short lifetime due to a lack of clearance between 12V power and a nearby screw, which could become a fire hazard if in contact.

The PC case and peripheral company will offer a completely redesigned PCIe riser assembly to current owners in a move that it believes will address the root cause of the issue.

"We will be removing the H1 from the NZXT Store and NZXT BLD, " NZXT CEO, Johnny Hou, says in a blog post. "We’re going to send out redesigned PCIe Gen3 Riser Assemblies for current H1s and we’re going to help with installation for those who need it."

The new riser comes as the second fix for the initial clearance issue in the H1. The first solution was to offer customers non-conductive nylon screws, but this fix was flawed as requests for screws have been slow to fulfil, and seen as unsubstantial to some, including Gamers Nexus, who recently reported its complaints in a video, both with the stopgap solution and possible concerns over a user unknowingly replacing these with metal screws because the nylon screws look like placeholders. 

It certainly caught the attention of the right people, too, as just the next day the blog post on the NZXT website from Hou promised the new fix, a more robust design process, and an eventual recall.

Here's the statement from Hou in full:

To our community,

We’re sorry.

The nylon screws were not the complete solution for the H1 fire hazard; they didn’t address the root cause of the issue. We didn’t account for scenarios where someone could replace the nylon screws with metal ones unknowingly. Our execution did not live up to the quality that our community has come to expect from us.

We will be removing the H1 from the NZXT Store and NZXT BLD. We’re going to send out redesigned PCIe Gen3 Riser Assemblies for current H1s and we’re going to help with installation for those who need it.

Going forward, we’re instituting more robust and thorough design processes. From the initial designs, QA, to additional testing, we’re committed to quality in both our products and our response to your concerns.

We want to thank Steve from Gamers Nexus. He and his team brought the issue of someone replacing the nylon screws with metal screws to our attention and raised the urgency surrounding it.

NZXT H1 PC case

(Image credit: NZXT)
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The new PCIe riser will start shipping by the end of March, the company says. It claims to have been working on the fix since November in response to the initial fire hazard, but was planning on rolling it out as an updated design. 

NZXT is also offering to refund the case, if customers prefer, although that process may require going back to the retailer where the case was initially purchased.

The H1 was hardly cheap, either, at $350 (£300).

There's also word of a formal recall on the way, as NZXT works with the US Consumer Product Safety Commission. It says this has been in the works since November also, but has no further information at this time.

Jacob Ridley
Senior Hardware Editor

Jacob earned his first byline writing for his own tech blog. From there, he graduated to professionally breaking things as hardware writer at PCGamesN, and would go on to run the team as hardware editor. Since then he's joined PC Gamer's top staff as senior hardware editor, where he spends his days reporting on the latest developments in the technology and gaming industries and testing the newest PC components.