A flashing red light is an error code. Modern appliances use error codes to aid consumers in the troubleshooting process.
Interestingly, Beatriz Pozo Arcos, Ruud Balkenende, Conny Bakker, and Bas Flipsen, in this report from the Journal of Cleaner Production, have found that manufacturers do not design appliances in a manner that simplifies fault diagnosis.
Even in this case, the flashing red light on a Walgreens heating pad shows something has gone. But it won’t identify the exact fault. This forces you to consider and either confirm or eliminate one of the following culprits:
1). Faulty Power Cord
The power cord transmits electricity from your home’s circuit to the heating pad. A power cord can fail you in the following ways.
- The cable can accrue damage. It can break, rip, tear, and generally wear out. In the best-case scenario, a damaged cord will prevent the heating pad from starting. In the worst case, the damage will lead to a short circuit and arcing. This may start a fire. Either way, the heating pad will use the flashing red light to tell you it lacks sufficient power.
- The power cord’s connection to the controller is loose. This compromises the heating pad’s access to the power it requires. Either it won’t work, or it will start, but you won’t get the temperatures you want.
- The power cord is not connected to the controller. Here, the heating pad won’t start because it doesn’t have power.
- The power cord has a loose connection to the plug. Careless consumers create this problem by pulling the wire to remove the plug from the outlet. This habit weakens the cable’s connection to the plug. Once again, the device will either refuse to start or it won’t generate the temperatures you want. The red indicator will flash red to alert you.
2). Problem In The Plug
The power cord is not the only component that compromises the heating pad’s access to power. The plug is just as problematic:
- You may forget to connect the plug to a wall outlet. Here, you won’t see the blinking LED because the heating pad won’t even start.
- Some people push the plug into a wall outlet, but they don’t apply enough pressure. A loose plug in an outlet is a fire and electrocution hazard. But this isn’t always your fault. Plugs can wear out. Once that happens, the prongs won’t maintain a secure connection to the outlet, no matter how much pressure you apply.
- A plug with loose connections is a fire and electrocution hazard. The heating pad won’t start. If it starts, the red LED will blink. The pad will generate too much heat or too little.
3). Bad Outlet
A bad outlet will interfere with the heating pad’s power supply. But how do you identify a faulty outlet? Connect the heating pad to a second outlet. If it works, the first outlet has a problem. This assumes that you’ve plugged the heating pad into the wall outlet.
Some people don’t read the instructions, especially newbies. They don’t realize that heating pads require a power supply to work. Others have faulty breakers. The blanket may operate briefly before flashing a red indicator in response to voltage fluctuations and insufficient current.
Many people are quick to blame wall outlets. But according to the wire tech company, wall sockets can last 25 years. This Safety And Health At Work Report (OSHRI) has noted that most sockets don’t show a manufacturing date.
Manufacturers expect these devices to stand the test of time. Therefore, before you replace the socket, take a moment to inspect the breaker, especially if you can’t detect any current in the wall outlet.
4). Extension Cord Problem
Everyone uses extension cords these days. The same goes for power strips. These items extend your reach whilst also increasing the number of outlets at your disposal. However, many manufacturers prohibit consumers from using extension cords.
They are prone to overheating and overloading. First of all, they increase the distance the current must travel, which, in turn, elevates the resistance, hence raising the risk of overheating. Secondly, people are more likely to connect multiple appliances to extension cords and power strips, creating an overload.
Therefore, manufacturers want consumers to avoid them. If the red light on your Walgreens heating pad stops blinking when you connect the plug to a wall outlet, the extension cord is the problem.
5). Failed Control Unit
Have you seen that device you use to adjust the heating pad’s settings? That is the controller, and it can fail because of surges, physical damage, exposure to excess moisture, and more. Consumers expect the heating pad to stop working when the control unit fails.
However, the heating pad may continue to run for a few more weeks or months. During that time, the red LED will blink continuously, letting you know things have gone wrong.
Glitches are commonplace in electronic appliances. Even though they can interfere with your product’s operations, glitches are usually harmless. They can compel the heating pad’s red LED to blink even though nothing is wrong.
You won’t know you have an electronic glitch until you scrutinize the heating blanket, eliminating every conceivable culprit. This makes glitches an inconvenience. But they shouldn’t worry you unless they persist.
7). Old Age
The symptoms some technicians dismiss as glitches could point to old age. If your Walgreens heating pad has reached the end of its lifespan, the flashing LED is the least of your worries. Eventually, the heating pad will stop working.
Heating pads are not like refrigerators. They don’t last long. Expect them to fail after three to five years.
How To Troubleshoot Walgreens Heating Pad Blinking Red Light?
- Plug the heating pad into a new outlet. If it works and the blinking light fades, the old outlet is the problem. Open it and search for burn marks and broken wires. Where necessary, replace the outlet. They are inexpensive. A defective wall socket is a fire hazard.
- Inspect and replace a defective breaker.
- If the blinking red light persists in the second outlet, check the plug. If the plug has a fuse that blew, replace it. If you see burn marks and loose or broken wires, fix or replace them. You can also replace the plug.
- If you’ve inspected the plug and it looks fine, or you’ve replaced it, but the blinking light persists, turn to the power cord. Do you see tears and breaks in the jacket? Are the conductors exposed? Find and install a new power cord.
- If the power cord passes inspection, switch to the controller. Is the connection between the controller and the power cord firm? If not, push the power cord into the controller until the connection is secure.
- Open the controller and test it for continuity. Replace a defective control unit. Call the manufacturer and ask them to send a new controller. Replacement controllers are a challenge to locate. Some faulty controllers will stop blinking once you clean them.
- Perform a reset by depriving the heating pad of power for a few minutes. This will clear glitches.
- Replace an old and worn-out heating pad, especially if it has broken internal wires.