Space Heater Safety

With the cooler weather approaching some of us (including myself) may feel the need to tote the space heater around the house with them. As tempting as that may be make sure to remember the following:

  • Do not use an extension cord or strip plug. If you must use an extension cord, make sure it is a heavy duty cord marked with a power rating at least as high as that on the label of the heater itself.
  • Run the power cord so that no one steps on or trips over it.
  • Inspect the heater’s cord periodically to look for frayed wire or damaged insulation. Do not use a space heater with a damaged cord.
  • Turn off the heater when you leave the room ‐ unplug the heater when you leave for the day. Never leave a space heater unattended or running while you sleep.
  • When buying a heater, look for one that has been tested and labeled by a nationally recognized testing company.
  • Place the heater on a level surface away from areas where someone might bump it and knock it over.
  • Keep electric heaters away from water. Never use them near a sink or in the bathroom.
  • Use space heaters only as a supplementary source of heat. These devices are not intended to replace the home’s heating system.
  • Check periodically for a secure plug/outlet fit. If the plug becomes very hot, the outlet may need to be replaced by a qualified technician. This could be the sign of a potential home wiring issue.
  • Heaters should be placed on a flat, level surface. Do not place heaters on furniture since they may fall and become damaged or break parts in the heater.
  • Unless the heater is designed for use outdoors or in bathrooms, do not use in damp, wet areas.
  • Keep the heater at least three feet away from bedding, drapes, furniture, and any other flammable or combustible materials.
  • Keep children and pets away from space heaters.

Tips from MDOW Insurance


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