Cold weather generally prompts people to break out the space heater at home or in the office for added warmth and comfort. This is a great idea because it can help to save money on heating bills when you only need extra heat in one area of the room. However, the last thing anyone needs is a fire erupting, especially during the holiday season.
According to the National Fire Protection Association, between 2011 and 2015, space heaters accounted for 43 percent of U.S. home heating fires and 85 percent of home heating deaths. It is crucial to follow safety guidelines and take precautions to minimize the risk of space heaters causing damage to a home or an office.
Space heaters need outlets that can handle their high, fluctuating current. It is never a good idea to plug one in to a power strip, surge protector or multi-outlet box as it should be plugged directly into the wall. Ensuring the wall outlet is only used for the space heater and no other appliance at the same time is always your best bet to keep you, your office, and home safe from an accidental fire.Once the space heater is safely plugged into the wall, make sure to give it plenty of room (at least three feet) away from drapes, bedding, furniture, the Christmas tree, or flammable items such as cleaning products or volatile liquids. Place the space heater on an uncarpeted, solid, flat surface to keep it from tipping over, and never leave it unattended—especially if pets or children will be in the area.