Safety Tips for Using Your Portable Heater
A portable heater is an appliance that usually heats up part of a home. A portable propane heater or electric heater provides several advantages. You do not have to waste energy and money heating up the entire house. If some of the members of your household are particularly sensitive to the cold, they can use a portable heater in their rooms. These heaters are also easy to carry, and are safe to operate as long as you follow some basic precautions and guidelines.
Operation and Placement
Only buy portable heaters from recognized companies, and ensure that they have necessary safety certifications. Before operating the portable heater, read the safety and usage instructions in the manual. Keep the heater in a free space, and ensure that it is a safe distance away from furniture, bedding, draperies, and other equipment. Never leave the heater unattended for long periods of time. When not in use, unplug the power cord from the electric outlet.
Never keep a portable heater on an elevated surface, where it is at risk of toppling over and starting a fire. Never operate portable heater in bathrooms or near sources of water. An electric shock is possible, especially if the heater is electric. Never keep inflammable materials or liquids close to the heater. A space of at least 3 feet is necessary between any household articles and the front of the heater. Make sure the heater has proper air supply. Avoid keeping portable heaters near doors or other exit points, as this can block the exit in case of a fire.
Connect the electric cord to a secure electric outlet directly. Avoid the use of extension cords, and do not plug multiple appliances in the same outlet. This can cause overheating, and could result in a fire. If the plug gets too hot, or if the plug does not fit properly in the outlet, you may have to change the outlet. Never let the power cord run under rugs or carpets, where it will be inconspicuous and can be damaged by heavy items placed on the rug. Keep the cord away from high traffic areas, or else people are at risk of tripping over the cord and toppling the heater over. Regularly check the power cord for any signs of wearing out or damage. In such cases, replace the heater, or called a licensed professional for repair.
Never leave a portable heater in a child’s room without adult supervision, and keep a safe distance away from children and pets. Only use portable heaters for their intended purpose, which is to heat up living space. Never use these appliances for cooking, thawing, or drying materials. Some portable heaters have a feature that shuts off the heater automatically when it falls over. Look for this feature when you purchase a portable heater. Touching a portable heater with wet hands can cause an electric shock. In addition to sufficient ventilation, a portable heater also needs regular cleaning. Dirt and dust can block the outlets and cause overheating, which can result in fires.