As the weather outside gets colder and colder many people decide to use a space heater. Whether it is to save money by heating a single room or to supplement heat for that one room that is always freezing, space heaters can be a big help during the winter. They can also be a safety hazard. Vredevoogd Heating & Cooling wants you to be cautious and stay safe with these space heater safety tips.
Space Heater Selection
Space heaters are responsible for an average of 25,000 house fires a year. Choosing the right one from your home requires research and should not simply be based on the cheapest one you find. Whether you are purchasing a space heater to supplement your heat in colder rooms or you are buying one to have on hand in emergency situations, it is important to make the right selection. In general, an electric space heater is going to be safer than a fuel-burning portable space heater. Either way, there are certain features you should look for.
Safety Features to Look For
Certification. Your space heater should always have a safety certification label from a trusted independent testing facility. Look for things like the UL Mark, a certification from CSA International, or an ETL label from Intertek.
Shutoff Feature. Make sure that your space heater automatically shuts off when it is overheating, detects low oxygen levels, tips over, or if the grill is touched.
Sturdy Cord. Most space heaters come equipped with a 6-foot cord. Never use an extension cord or power strip as they could lead to overheating.
Safe Setup & Use
Now that you have picked the right space heater for your home, make sure it is safely set up to prevent hazards. Always keep your space heater at least 3 feet away from any flammable or combustible materials and always set it up on the floor unless it was specifically designed otherwise. Never place a space heater in a room with flammable liquids and do not put them on easily ignitable surfaces like carpet.
Use Smoke & Carbon Monoxide Detectors
You should already have these in your home, but if you don’t now is the time to purchase them. If you already have a detector installed remember to test it before setting up your space heater and replace the batteries if necessary.
Vredevoogd Heating & Cooling wants you and your family to stay safe and warm during these cold winter months. If you are experiencing an issue with your furnace or need to have it serviced give us a call for fast and friendly service.