You may have heard horror stories about fire and burn injuries involving space heaters. With space heaters becoming more popular in recent years, it is important to be aware of the risks and make safe choices when purchasing and operating one.
Space heater safety tips you should know:
• Purchase a high-quality space heater with automatic shut-off features.
• Make sure the space cord of the heater is securely fastened and not dangling. It can cause fatal burns if your dog or cat steps on it.
• Move and store the heater so as not to trip over it in case of a fall (when a space heater falls over, it can cause electrocution that can be dangerous for pets, young children and older adults).
• Place a product such as an electric kettle on top of the space heater to keep it off the ground so small children cannot trip over, pull or climb on top of it. According to CPSC, space heaters tip over an average of 700 times a year and cause about 200 home fires per year.
• Keep an eye on your pets and young children while they may be in the area near the heater. Some dogs may like to lie in front of or on top of them; others may chew on electrical cords. If you see your pet or child with their face near a heat source, warn them to stay away. Use a childproof gate or door barrier if the space heater is within reach of young children.
• As always, remember to unplug all electrical appliances before cleaning them, and never eat near or over an appliance that uses gas.
• Be aware of power strips, extension cords and cigarette lighters that may be used as heaters. Keep them out of reach of children, pets and children with mobility issues. Never share an electric space heater with another family member because it is easy for someone to accidentally touch the controls or switch if it is not properly secured.
Be safe and smart when purchasing and using a space heater. Proceed with caution because an accident can cause serious injury or even death. We have discussed some of the major safety tips to consider when buying a space heater. These tips can help to prevent fire and burn injuries. Remember, you can keep your family safe by following these tips and becoming informed about the hazards that may occur.
Which is safer, a space heater or furnace?
According to the National Fire Protection Association statistics, the number of residential fires involving portable space heaters has exceeded those of furnaces for the last four years. However, furnaces are still responsible for over twice as many deaths as portable heaters.
How can I prevent burns resulting from using my space heater?
Never drape anything over your space heater or place items on top of it, such as a table, newspaper, book, or cooking pan, because they may block air from flowing around it and cause it to overheat.