How To Prevent a Space Heater Fire
Space heaters can be useful for keeping an area in your home warmer than the temperature setting on central heating. These appliances can lower costs and increase comfort. An unsafe appliance or one that is not operated properly can lead to a burned space heater and house fire. Follow a few simple measures to safely use a space heater.
Choose a Heater With Safety Features
The right heater can reduce the risk of a fire. Make sure the model you buy has the following safety features:
- Ground fault circuit interrupter plug
- Automatic shut-off for overheating
- Safety certification
- A cord that is six feet or longer
A heater with these features may cost slightly more but should be worth the peace of mind.
Situate a Heater in a Safe Spot
A burned space heater may result if you operate this appliance in a risky location. Make sure the room where you plan to use the heater has an empty outlet, level surface, and sufficient space. You should always:
• Avoid plugging other electronics into the same outlet as a space heater
• Plug the heater directly into an outlet and never use an extension cord
• Keep at least three feet of space between heaters and combustibles such as curtains, bedding, or upholstery
• Situate the heater on a hard, non-flammable, level surface
Attend Operating a Heater
Even an appliance with safety features that is safely situated can still be a fire hazard. Reduce the risk of fire by turning off the appliance when you leave the room. You should never operate a heater unattended around children and pets or leave a heater plugged in when not in use.
It is estimated that space heaters start around 25,000 house fires every year in the United States. If a burned space heater causes a fire in your home in Champaign/Urbana, contact residential fire damage and smoke cleanup specialists. 217-355-0077.