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Space Heater Safety Tips to Avoid House Fires

People across the nation are breaking out their winter jackets, scarves, and gloves to prepare for the winter months that are upon us. Keeping warm during winter is important for everyone, so it is likely that many people are grabbing their space heaters as well. While a space heater can be a useful tool during the winter, it can also present some dangers when inside your home or office. Here are a few helpful tips to consider while using your space heater this winter.

Only plug it into the wall.

The inevitable temptation to plug your space heater into a power strip or extension cord is common and understandable. Sometimes you need heat in places where no wall outlets are close by. However, you must resist this temptation! Most space heaters require a lot of energy, and you can easily overload a common household power strip with them. You could start an electrical fire in your home or office by overloading your extension cord, so be sure to only plug your space heater directly into a wall outlet.

Give it a break.

Try not to leave your space heater turned on for extended periods of time. You should turn off your heater and unplug it from the wall every couple of hours. By doing so, you are reducing the risk of overworking your heater. Most space heaters have heavy duty heater coils and fans inside of them, so overworking your heater could result in a dangerous malfunction. These malfunctions are rare but if you only use your heater for appropriate amounts of time, you will only further ensure safety.

Leave enough space between your heater and other flammable objects.

Finally, when using your heater, take caution in what is near or in front of the main vent. Because the airflow is usually upwards of 85 degrees, it will slowly but surely warm up anything to dangerous levels. In some cases, the heat exposure may cause certain fabrics to catch fire if left too closely for too long. To avoid this, allow at least three feet of space between your heater and anything that might be damaged or catch fire, including yourself and your clothes.

Protect your assets with insurance. 

If you remember all of these tips this winter, consider yourself protected from any avoidable disasters caused by your space heater. Of course, not all disasters are completely avoidable. If you want to protect yourself from any unpredictable damage to your home this holiday season, be sure to do your research and find an insurance plan that works for you. Whether it be homeowner’s insurance, renters insurance, or additional asset protection, it is always important to make sure that you are covered.