If you’re not careful, space heaters can be very dangerous. They can fall over, be covered by flammable items or forgotten about. Any of these accidents may lead to a dangerous fire in a matter of minutes. According to the NFPA, space heaters contributed to 43% of home heating fires in the U.S. Even though there are risks associated with these types of heaters, in some cases, they’re needed during the winter months in the Fort Worth Texas area. Offices have central heating that can’t always sufficiently warm up every corner. Homes with poor insulation can also benefit from space heaters during the winter.

At home:

  1. Keep space heaters in a clear space away from any flammable items. Make sure there aren’t any loose items sitting nearby that can get swept on top of your space heaters.
  2. Only use space heaters approved by an independent testing laboratory. Any other space heaters shouldn’t be considered for use because of missing safety features.
  3. Don’t tuck away space heaters where they can be easily forgotten. Put them in your line of sight so you’re reminded to turn the heaters off every time you glance over.
  4. Plug space heaters directly into the wall. Doing so minimizes the chance of overloading a power strip or extension cord and causing a fire. If you have to use an extension cord, make sure it’s capable of handling the wattage.
  5. Only use space heaters that have an auto shut off function. This is important to have if your space heaters ever fall over.
  6. Unplug space heaters when you leave or go to sleep. You should always be able to keep an eye on your space heaters when plugged in.
  7. Keep children and pets away from space heaters. The NFPA recommends a 3-foot clearing around space heaters that children aren’t allowed to cross. Anything less increases the likelihood of an accidental disaster.

At the office:

  1. Restrict the type of space heaters allowed in the office. Independent lab approved with an automatic shut off is recommended.
  2. Make sure employees who use the space heaters have approval before use. This will ensure that management knows how many space heaters are being used so outlets aren’t overloaded. It’s also smart to have someone who knows where all of the space heaters are to ensure they’re all shut off at the end of the day.
  3. Place space heaters out of the way of foot traffic. An accidental kick could have disastrous results. However, you do want to keep them in your line of vision to ensure you don’t forget to turn them off when you leave the area.

Use the tips above to keep your home or office as safe as possible while space heaters are in use. When disaster strikes, ServiceMaster TEAM in the Fort Worth, Texas area is here for you. We are committed to superior results, courteous customer support and conscientious cost controls. You can expect our expert technicians to arrive in a ServiceMaster Clean vehicle, uniformed and highly-trained. Contact us 24/7 for emergency fire damage restoration services.

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