Electric heaters do a wonderful job at heating up a confined space. Typically, they are used for smaller areas of the home – be it a small corner office, or perhaps a second bedroom. They can range in size, but mostly people use them to save money, by not using the traditional electric baseboard heat. Some smaller models are rather portable, allowing you to bring them with you in the car if you’re headed for a vacation home, or a cottage without electric heating.
However, despite their utility, electric heaters also pose a genuine fire and safety risk, if improperly handled or stored when plugged in. Here are seven safety tips to bear in mind when using an electric heater.
- Ensure You Unplug Your Heater When Not In Use
To avoid a larger-than-expected electricity bill, and to avoid a potential fire hazard, it is critical that you unplug your electric heater when it is not in use. You should never leave an electric heater switched on overnight, or for long periods of time when it will be unattended. Unplugging your heater is the easiest way to ensure your safety when you’re finished with your electric heater.
- Keep It Away From Children & Pets
Children and pets having free roam around hot things is a recipe for disaster. Whether that’s a hot cup of tea, or something far more sinister like an electric heater. Make sure that, if you’re using your electric heater, you keep your pet away from it. Pets can get badly burned from resting unknowingly up against an electric heater. It’s also equally important that you let your children know that it’s there and that it can be dangerous and remind them to avoid going near it – even if they think it isn’t turned on. You do not want any unnecessary injuries!
- Do Not Put Your Heater Near Any Water Source
Generally-speaking, electric heaters should never be used in a kitchen environment (for this exact reason), but you should try to keep your electric heater away from any and all water sources, it only takes an accidental spill to cause an electrical fire.
- Keep Well Away From Furniture
Most furniture material is combustible – whether it’s leather or plastic or wood or thread – exposure to heat for an elongated period could well cause a fire. Make sure that the electric heater isn’t used anywhere near furniture, or even wooden wall panelling. It is not to be used to dry out any wet furniture.
- Do Not Use The Electric Heater as a Drying Rack
Similarly to furniture, electric heaters are not to be used as a substitute for a tumble dryer or clothesline. While clothing certainly will dry on top of an electric heater – there is a far greater fire risk, as the clothing tends to dry too fast for one’s memory and if left unattended, the threads could overheat and cause a fire.
- Choose a Safety-First Electric Heater
One of the things to look out for when stocking electric heaters is that most customers will want to buy something that has safety built in. Ensure that whatever your electric heater selection, it has safety features such as an automatic shut-off when it tips over, or when the temperature of the heater reaches above a certain level.
- Plug Your Electric Heater Directly Into the Wall
Rather than using extension cords or power bars, make sure that your electric heater is plugged directly into the wall. This will avoid the possibility that your extension cord or power bar will overheat, causing a fire.
Electric heaters are a simple tool to keep confined spaces warm during the cooler months. But the use of common-sense safety practices can save lives and should be actively encouraged among all of your customers.
If you’re looking for a range of electric heaters to choose from, check out RS components today for a variety of choices!