Space Heater Safety Tips
As the weather gets colder, many people look for ways to stay warm inside. So far some there are spaces in their homes that do not get as warm as the rest of the house. There are some homes where an entire section is toasty warm, but the other section feels like a freezer. Perhaps you have some of these problems in your own home. You may opt to use space heaters as a way to supplement the heat in your home. Unfortunately, there are a large number of fires and related deaths associated with space heaters each year. There are some smart tips to keep you and your family safe this winter season. Continue reading to find out more.
Tip #1 – Put it On the Floor
Most space heaters like to hang out on the floor. You may be cold and want it blowing its hot air on you as much as possible, but it is safest on the floor. You should not put it on a shelf or stool. You absolutely want to keep it off your bed and do not put it on the carpet. You want to place it on a flat and smooth surface to ensure it is stable and will not tip over.
Tip #2 – Keep it Dry
While this may be an obvious statement, it is a necessary one. Water and electricity do not mix and are a lethal combination. So keep your space heater away from your bathrooms and kitchen.
Tip #3 – Keep it By Itself
You want to make sure that your space heater is not near any flammable items. It should be about three feet away from anything. You especially want to make sure it is not near curtains, blankets, sheets, pillows, or furniture. In addition, you want to make sure it is not near any flammable material such as matches, chemicals, or paint. Look around where you plan to place your space heater. If there is a chance something could fall on it, you want to move that item or look for a different place to put the space heater.
Tip #4 – Never Leave it Unattended
You should not leave your space heater turned on in a room where there is not an adult present. This is especially true if you have children or pets. There is a greater risk that children or pets can knock over the space heater. Modern heaters have shut-off switches that turn them off when they are tipped over or reach a certain temperature, but you do not want to take a chance. Some space heaters make a loud sound when they are knocked over, so you are alerted. Also, you should not leave your space heater on while you sleep. There are some heaters that continue to keep the room warm even after they are turned off. If you want one in a room where you are sleeping, you should consider that type of heater.
Tip #5 – Plug it into the Wall
While you may consider plugging your space heater into a surge protector or extension cord, you should not. Space heaters should be plugged directly into a wall outlet. Extension cords and surge protectors add extra layers of electrical connection and may cause heat to build up, which could cause a fire. When you plug your space heater into the wall, you want to make sure that it is several feet away from the wall. Modern space heaters tend to come with extra long cords. Do not cover them with rugs or other items because you do not like the way they look. This may cause a fire because it prevents heat from escaping. You also want to make sure the cord does not get bent or pinched in any way.
Tip #6 – Regular Inspections
You want to regularly inspect your space heater to make sure it is in good working order. For example, check the cord to make sure there are not any fraying spots or holes. It would be best if you also cleaned your space heater on a regular basis.
If you have questions about your current heating system or wonder if there are ways to make it more effective, contact Comfort Systems today. A knowledgeable and experienced technician will be more than happy to assist you.