Safety Tips for Space Heaters
Winter is a time of the year when all those devices and supplies that are designed to keep a home warmer are brought out of retirement for a few months. From thick bedding and woolly scarves to space heaters, the chances are that you have a handful of things that are going to be making an appearance in your home this winter.
Space heaters are a very popular addition to home heating, they can be seen in homes and work places all around the Chicagoland area. The practical heating source is a great way to keep a property warm, but it does pose a serious safety risk if it’s not used properly.
Careful consideration needs to go into the use, storage, and maintenance of your space heater if you want to make sure that it’s a safe addition to your house this winter. To help make sure that your space heater is not the cause of serious problems in your home, here are the nine essential safety tips that you need to follow:
Tip One: Read the Instructions!
Whilst many products can be figured out without an instruction manual, it’s vital that you read the instructions of any space heater that you buy or already own. Any warning labels on the heater should be read properly and adhered to, to prevent the electrical and fire risks that comes attached to space heater use.
Tip Two: Properly Inspect Your Space Heater
If your space heater has been in storage for the year then you need to make sure that you properly inspect all parts of the heater for signs of any damage, including connections that have become loose, cracks in the heater or the plug, and any other plug damage that might have occurred.
Even if your space heater has been in use throughout the year, it should still be inspected on a regular basis to make sure that it’s in good working condition.
Tip Three: Choose the Right Place for Your Space Heater
Space heaters can’t be positioned anywhere, there are certain places where it’s unsafe or a potential hazard to place the heater. Space heaters should never be placed:
- In damp rooms
- In room entrances
- In areas of high traffic
- Near water sources
- Near flammable materials
- On furniture
- On uneven surfaces
- On carpet
Tip Four: Avoid Using Extension Cables
Space heaters need their own wall outlet that isn’t shared with any other appliances and should never be plugged directly into any kind of extension cable. Shared outlets and extension cables can increase the risk of fire.
Tip Five: Don’t Leave Your Space Heater Unattended
Unlike with standard radiators, it’s not safe to leave the room when a space heater is turned on. Space heaters need to be monitored and turned off immediately if you leave the room or go out of the house.
Make sure that you also unplug the space heater when it’s not being used and if required, relocate it to a safe place where it’s not going to be knocked or damaged.
Tip Six: Ensure Your Space Heater Has Been Checked
If you’ve just purchased a new space heater or are looking to buy a new space heater then make sure that any model you purchase has been laboratory tested to ensure that it’s completely safe for use. It’s important to do your research and make sure that the laboratory where the heater was tested is recognized.
Tip Seven: Only Use the Heater for the Intended Purposes
Space heaters are good for providing a little extra heat to a room but they’re potentially very dangerous when used for any other purpose. Without substantial risk to your family, home, and belongings, you can’t dry anything on a space heater or use it to heat anything but the air in a room.
Tip Eight: Make Sure You Have Smoke Alarms Installed
As a preventive measure in case the worst happens with your space heater, it’s important that you only use the heater in rooms that have a smoke alarm installed. Smoke alarms should be tested regularly to make sure they’re fully operational.
Tip Nine: Schedule Professional General Seasonal HVAC Maintenance
Every year come winter it’s important to schedule general seasonal HVAC maintenance, which covers all your appliances for heating, ventilation, and air conditioning. Having a professional check your heating and all heating appliances will give you a peace of mind over their condition and potentially alert you to any problems that you may have missed during your initial inspection.
A professional HVAC specialist, that is insured, bonded, and licensed, will be able to perform essential checks, undertake repairs, and suggest replacements or upgrades where required. If you haven’t scheduled general seasonal HVAC inspection and maintenance yet for the winter, it’s important to get book an appointment with a local Chicago HVAC expert sooner rather than later.
Every heating appliance in your home should be used safely, but when it comes to space heaters, the potential risk is too great to be lax in the way that you use the appliance. For a warmer home, without serious risk, it’s vital that you take on board our safety tips for space heaters and make sure that heating your home is never a danger.