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Is That Space Heater Safe

We get it, it’s cold out. You’re snuggled up at home with the furnace roaring, but your poor little toes are still frozen solid. The next step is natural; plug in your space heater! They’re small, portable, convenient, and keep the gas bill low. That little portable convenience can cause millions of dollars in property damage if not properly taken care of! Heating equipment like portable heaters are the second leading cause of home fires in the United States, following cooking fires. More than 65,000 fires occur each year, all because of temporary carelessness.

Here are some tips to maintaining your space heater and making sure your home is safe from fire:

1. Never leave it unattended. If you’re leaving the room, or going to sleep, make sure to turn it off. You need to be immediately aware of any smoke or electrical sparks, and you can’t be aware if you’re passed out – especially in the cozy warmth from that heater!

2. Heaters should be at least three feet away from any flammable substances, including rugs, piles of clothes, your cat…

3. Placement is key! This also goes for keeping the space heater out of high traffic areas. You don’t want it in the middle of the hall so somebody can trip and hurt themselves!

4. Do not use a surge protector, or extension cord to plug in your space heater. They need to be plugged directly into an outlet, to avoid overheating and fire. If the cord is too short, you’ll need to look into getting a new heater, or relocate closer to an outlet.

5. Space heaters need to be on level ground away from cabinets and various other furniture. Reduce the risk of them tipping and keep them on tile or hardwood flooring, if you have to keep them on carpet, make sure that you’re regularly checking the floor temperature.

6. Regularly inspect your heater for cracks or frayed cords. If you find them, purchase a new heater and properly dispose of the broken one.

There are many ways to stay warm this winter, and while purchasing a space heater is one of them, your safety should be a top priority too. If your HVAC or home heating systems aren’t up to par, there could be an issue and the sooner you get it resolved, the sooner you can pack the space heater away for the rest of the season. Contact us at Priority Heating and Cooling today for an estimate, we’re here to help!

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