Space Heater Safety
With the forecast of sub-zero temperatures for this weekend, many of us will turn on a space heater as a quick and convenient source of heat. I am definitely guilty of using a space heater to warm up during the winter months! However, space heaters can be hazardous if not used correctly. Space heaters are responsible for 32 percent of house fires, according to the National Fire Protection Association. If you plan to use a space heater in your home, please review these tips to keep you, your family, and your property safe!
- When buying a heater, choose one that has been tested and certified by a nationally recognized testing institution such as Underwriters Laboratories (UL).
- Do not attempt to repair a broken heater yourself. It should be checked and repaired by a qualified appliance service center.
- Do not use an extension cord with a space heater.
- Never leave a space heater unattended.
- Never sleep with a space heater on.
- Keep children and pets away from space heaters.
- Keep the heater at least 3 feet from flammable items such as curtains, furniture, or bedspreads.
- Read and follow the manufacturer’s operating instructions.
- Keep heaters away from water to prevent electrocution.
- Select a space heater with a guard around the heating element.
- Buy a heater that can handle the area that you want to heat.
- Never use or store flammable liquids near a space heater.
- Do not use a heater in a bathroom–it’s a high-moisture area that could cause damage.
- Be sure the heater’s plug fits snugly in an outlet. The cord and plug may feel warm when operating since the unit draws so much power, but they should not feel hot. If they do, unplug the heater and have a qualified repair person check for problems.
Stay warm and SAFE this winter!