As winter approaches, you may find yourself looking to supplement your residential or commercial heating system. Whether your entire property gets cold too quickly or a specific room fails to warm up without converting the remaining rooms into a thermal bath, a space heater can be a perfect solution. It can keep you and your loved ones’ feet toasty, but it can also be a safety hazard, especially if you purchase the wrong one or misuse it.
The National Fire Protection Association claims that portable heaters cause 43% of residential heating fires and 85% of related deaths. Correspondingly, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission estimates that space heaters cause over 25,000 home fires every year while over 6,000 Americans receive treatment for burn injuries caused by space heaters. Thus, this equipment can put your family and property at risk. Nevertheless, this doesn’t mean you should avoid using a space heater. With these safety tips, you can reduce your risk.
Review the Instructions
Before turning on your portable heater and becoming comfortable, ensure that you read the manufacturer’s manual. Most manufacturers give specific instructions, including directions for usage duration and temperature settings. Reading the owner’s manual might not seem important, but it can help you avoid a disaster.
Don’t Leave the Space Heater Unattended
Although a space heater may seem like an incredible way to keep your room warm, the risk of a fire can be greater than you think. As such, it’s imperative never to leave your portable heater unattended. Space heaters use high-powered components to keep warm air circulating. Although effective at warming up a space, they can also heat other items near them. Spending a few minutes in another room can be enough to cause your entire house to go up in flames. Thus, always ensure that your portable heater is running under strict supervision. Before leaving, switch it off and unplug it.
Be Aware of Pets and Children
Keeping pets and children away from a space heater is imperative. Don’t allow pets and children to spend time in rooms with portable heaters unsupervised. It’s easy for pets, toddlers, and school-aged children to play with or touch the space heater, resulting in severe burns and injuries.
Give Your Portable Heater Adequate Space
Space heaters usually become extremely hot while in use. Although this is a good thing for warming a room, it can lead to a disaster if you place the heater improperly. For proper use, a portable heater should get access to heat on all sides, and you should never place it against a wall, furniture, or other items like pillows and curtains. Generally, ensure that there’s a distance of at least one meter between your heater and anything flammable.
Regular Maintenance and Inspection
Inspect your space heater frequently, especially when you first buy it. Also, ensure you clean and maintain it regularly to keep it in great shape. After turning it off and unplugging it, allow the space heater to cool and wipe it with a piece of cloth or vacuum to help minimize the amount of dust and allergens that might have gotten inside your heater.
Avoid Using an Extension Cord
Always plug your portable heater directly into the wall outlet with adequate sufficient power capacity. Connecting your heater to an extension cable presents the risks of electrical shock injuries, overheating, and electrical fires.
Keep Your Space Heater Away From Water
Unless it’s specially designed for use in damp areas, avoid using your heater in areas such as the bathroom and basement where water tends to pool. Also, avoid touching the heater with wet hands as this poses a risk of electrical shock, which can even lead to death.
We Can Help
If you aren’t sure if a space heater is best for you, call Healthy Home Heating & Cooling LLC. Our team has vast experience in assisting De Pere, WI, residents with an array of heating and cooling services. We take pride in providing exceptional services at competitive prices, allowing you and your loved ones to breathe safe, clean, and fresh air and remain comfortable all year round. From dealing with emergencies 24/7 to replacing, maintaining, repairing, and installing heating and cooling systems, you can rest assured that we’ll deliver only the best results. Schedule a service with us now by calling our offices or completing the online form.