As the outside temperature drops, many households will turn to the use of space heaters. While it is an incredibly useful device, space heaters can be extremely dangerous if used improperly. In the United States, portable heaters account for approximately “two of five home heating fires and 85% of home heating fire deaths.” Learn more about space heater safety by reading on below.
Space Heater Safety
Before pulling out the space heater, first test your fire and carbon monoxide detectors. If your space heater ever catches fire, then you want to ensure your alarm systems are working properly. An important key to space heater safety is always unplugging the heater when unattended. Do not leave the space heater running overnight or when you are out of the house.
It’s also critical to think about where you place the space heater. Ideally, you want to set your space heater on a level, non-flammable floor, taking care to avoid carpeted floors and tables. Ask yourself: if the space heater was to overheat, is there anything nearby that could catch fire?
Space heaters should never be unplugged by yanking on the cord. If you do this enough, the cord will start to fray and potentially break, exposing the wiring. This becomes a dangerous electrical and/or fire hazard. Always keep an eye out on your space heater’s cord to ensure the wires’ sheathes are fully intact.
Space heaters use a lot of power. Using the space heater at the same time as other electrical items could be too much for your electrical system. Keep your space heater running at only half power so it doesn’t cause a power outage.
Finally, all modern, safe space heaters have a safety label that indicates the machine has passed standard space heater safety protocols. If you purchased a space heater and it’s missing this label, do not use the heater. Do your research ahead of time, if you can, to determine the best and most safe heater available.
Tips from Tim Kyle Electric
Tim Kyle Electric is a residential electrician serving Baltimore County that can help you prepare your home for the winter season. Whether it’s for home safety plans and inspections, repairs and rewiring, emergency standby power, or new installations, contact Tim Kyle Electric.