Space Heaters: The Good and the Bad

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Why You Should Never Plug This Into A Power Strip

Space heaters are a great way to complement the heating system of your home.  They work well to heat small spaces during the shoulder months of April, May, September and October when temperatures can be chilly and heating the entire house doesn’t make sense.  Space heaters are ideal when you are sitting in the kitchen having your morning coffee or in your den while watching TV and you only want to heat the space you occupy.  They can also save on your heating bill because they use significantly less energy than heating your entire house.  Unfortunately, space heaters are responsible for a high percentage of home fires due to misuse.  Follow these tips to prevent house fires in your home:

  1. Always plug space heaters directly into a wall socket.  Most fires involving space heaters occur when the unit is plugged into a power strip.  Power strips are often not equipped to handle the wattage needed to run a space heater and the connection is the weakest link in the electrical chain.  Check the rating of your space heater and make certain the power source can handle what’s required for the space heater to operate safely.
  2. Never leave a space heater unattended.  Like any appliance, a space heater can malfunction with severe consequences igniting other flammables in a room if left unattended.  If you have to step away, turn the space heater off.
  3. Never sleep with a space heater on.  Again, for the same reasons you shouldn’t leave a space heater unattended.  By the time you realize there is a fire, it may be too late.  Smoke inhalation is the cause of 80% of deaths from fire so once you go to bed, turn the heater off.

The same holds true for kerosene heaters.  It’s better to be safe than sorry.  If you have any questions, please reach out to me.  Your feedback is welcome.

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