Is my space heater a fire waiting to happen?

As you know, utility bills are expensive, especially in the wintertime. To save on heating costs, you might turn your thermostat down and run a space heater. These little appliances are useful for heating small areas and keeping utility costs down for Kentucky residents, but they can also be dangerous. In fact, space heaters are considered one of the top causes of home fires and burn injuries in the country.

The DIY Network cautions that approximately one-third of home fires and four out of five fatalities related to heating equipment are caused by space heaters. If you recently bought a space heater or pulled one out of storage to keep you warm in the cold months, take note of the following safety tips:

  • Look online for reports of injuries or recalls involving your brand and model of space heater.
  • Absolutely never plug your heater into an extension cord, which can overheat and cause a fire.
  • Don’t run the heater’s cord under a rug or place it where you can trip over the cord or a pet can chew on it.
  • Always turn off your space heater and unplug it when you leave the room.
  • Place your heater at least three feet away from items that can overheat and combust, such as curtains, blankets or furniture.
  • Never leave a child or pet alone with a space heater.

When you take the proper precautions and inspect your space heater for signs of damage or defects, you may prevent a disaster in your home.