Space Heaters and Their Purpose
Posted in Heating on June 6, 2018
As a homeowner who wants to stay comfortable but not spend a fortune on the gas or electricity needed to keep your house warm you might use a space heater. Space heaters are amazing small devices that give you the luxury of warmth without the high price of energy. They’re good for a couple hours or so then you can turn them off and use them again, as necessary.
Though these little creations are seemingly nothing but good, they do pose a serious threat to the safety of our homes. Portable heaters are the second leading cause of fire damage in the US, leading to thousands of dollars in homeowners’ insurance claims, injuries and sometimes, even fatalities.
If the Heater is ON, Be in The Room
This rule is fairly easy to follow, as it basically follows the mantra of “safety first.” There’s not a grey area to speak of. If your space heater is on you should be near it. If you’re aren’t near it or are leaving the room, turn it off and unplug it. Turning it off should be common sense, however unplugging may be something you’re not familiar with. In case there is an electrical short or frayed wire unplugging is ideal so a fire won’t be able to start when you’re not around. Another good reason to unplug is to save money. Appliances of all types can consume electricity while off just by being plugged in.
Bypass Power Strips and Extension Cords
When a portable heater is plugged into an extension cord or power strip the chances of electrical shock or spark, or fire go up exponentially. To avoid any risk of shock, fire or worse, be certain that your space heater is plugged directly into a wall outlet, and that it’s the only item plugged in at that outlet. If there is any kind of electrical scoring (burn marks), or any sign of faulty electrical work, unplug immediately and have that outlet inspected. This inspection could cost you a little, but save you a lot in the long run.
Read and Understand the Manual
Reading contracts, agreements and other types of legalese can be very monotonous and honestly, useless. Does anyone really read the 62-page contract every time they update their phone? Nope. We just tap “AGREE” and that’s it. When it comes to something that may cause bodily harm or burn your house down you should take it a little more seriously. They print those manuals for a reason. Read it. Understand it. Abide by it. Being able to properly operate and/or troubleshoot a space heater can be very beneficial.
Keep Your Space
Remember this is a space heater. Not a duvet, not a blanket warmer, not a grill. It should be used to heat a small space. That’s the whole point, right? Let’s keep it safe by not ever placing anything on or near the heater-especially if it’s flammable. If you don’t know whether or not something is flammable, just assume that it is. Do not touch your heater while it’s in use keep about 2 to 3 feet away from it while operating. As with any other device that plugs in, runs or uses any type of energy, know about it, use caution with it and don’t abuse it.