Is Your Space Heater Safe?
When you want to raise the temperature in one room of your house, without cranking up the heat in every room, a space heater can be a great solution. To reduce the risk of a burned space heater, however, you must be diligent when looking for the safest option.
What Safety Features Should You Look For?
Safety Certification - It's critical to choose a space heater that has been awarded a safety certificate from an independent testing organization. Examples include the ETL label from Intertek and the CSA International certification. The certification should be visibly displayed on the packaging.
Sufficient cord - The cord must be sturdy and at least 6 feet long. Never plug the heater into a power strip or extension cord. You could wind up with a burned space heater if it overheats.
Shutoff features - Choose a space heater with a smart sensor that automatically shuts the unit off if it starts to overheat. Another feature you'll want to choose is a tip-over switch, which will turn the heater off if it's knocked over.
What Safety Precautions Should You Follow?
Always set the heater on a surface that is hard, level, and nonflammable. Never place a heater on a table.
Keep the heater 3 or more feet away from any type of flammable material. This includes curtains, bedding, and furniture.
Never use a space heater if gas or paint cans are nearby.
Always turn the heater off before leaving a room.
Never put a space heater in your kids' rooms.
Periodically check the cord for damage or wear.
Smoke alarms must be installed in every bedroom and every level in your home. Test them monthly and replace the batteries every year. If smoke cleanup is required, contact fire damage professional for assistance.
Following these simple steps can protect your home from a potential burned space heater.