February 26, 2015

Follow These Portable Heater Safety Tips to Stay Warm and Safe

Spring may just be around the corner, but much of the U.S. and Canada is so cold that you may think you’re in Antarctica.  During colder months, many of us turn to portable heaters to keep living rooms, bedrooms and even offices warm.  When used properly, these heaters are perfect at warming up a cold room without the need to turn up the furnace, which may be inefficient.  However, each year a number of unnecessary fires occur because the heater’s instructions were not properly followed.

Today’s New York Times has an informative article describing how manufacturers made portable heaters safer and more energy efficient wrapped in more contemporary and sleek designs.  For years portable heaters have had safety mechanisms that shut them off automatically if the internal temperature gets too high or if they tip over.  And, other safeguards exist too, such as motion sensors and models that are cool to the touch.

Click here to read the entire article.

No matter what type of portable heater you use, AHAM recommends the following safety tips:

  • Read the manufacturer’s instructions and warning labels before using your portable electric heater.
  • DO NOT leave operating heater unattended and always unplug heater when not in use.
  • DO NOT use your heater with a power strip or extension cord. Overheating of a power strip or extension cord could result in a fire.
  • String out cords on top of area rugs or carpeting. Placing anything, including furniture, on top of the cord may damage it.
  • Keep combustible materials, such as furniture, pillows, bedding, papers, clothes and curtains at least three feet from the front of the heater and away from the sides and rear. DO NOT block heater’s air intake or exhaust source.

To view more safety tips, visit AHAM’s Heater Safety website. Additionally, you may order copies of AHAM’s Portable Electric Heater Safety brochure by clicking here.

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