Space Heater Safety Tips

Dec 13, 2019 | Furnace, Heating, Winter

Space heaters are an excellent way to add a bit of extra warmth to your home during the cold weather months. Most people have a few areas in their homes where they would like to have just a little additional heat. Basements, garages, rooms that aren’t used all the time, all of these are perfect locations for a space heater. You will get just the right amount of heat without having to turn up your thermostat. 

Space heaters are very convenient and easy to use. Even so, there are some safety rules that must be observed pertaining to their use. Make sure you are aware of all of the points of space heater safety: 


Read the Instruction Manual 

Many people don’t like to bother with reading instruction manuals, particularly when the item is something as simple to use as a space heater. But sometimes a simple overlooked point or direction can have less than desirable results. Take just a few moments to read through the instruction manual that is included with your space heater. It doesn’t take very long, and it could be very important. 

Always Inspect Space Heaters for Damage 

As you are cleaning off your space heaters in preparing to put them away at the end of the cold-weather season, check them over to make sure that they have not been damaged in any way. Do this again when you take them back out for use once more. Pay special attention to the chords, plugs, dials, and casing. The smallest amount of damage, even if it appears to be cosmetic, can result in serious problems when the space heater is put into use once more. If you notice any damage whatsoever to the space heater, do not use it. It may not be anything important, but better safe than sorry. 

Use Space Heaters Only in Safe Locations 

Always place space heaters in clear, clean areas where there are at least three feet of open space on each side of the heater. Modern space heaters are built to remain cool on the outside and to turn off immediately if they are knocked over or if they become overheated, however, any type of heating device needs to be in a safe, open area to ensure that it will function properly. 

Put Space Heaters Away When Not Being Used 

Space heaters are designed to be small and unobtrusive, so you may be tempted to simply leave them out all the time, even when they’re not in use. This is not recommended. If they are left out all the time, this increases the chance that they could become damaged. It also allows them to collect dust and dirt unnecessarily. Putting your space heaters safely away when they’re not in use prevents any possibility of an accident occurring or any damage being done to them. 

Never Use Power Strips with Space Heaters 

Do not plug space heaters into power strips or extension cords. These cords are not designed to provide the current flow that is required to operate a space heater. They can quickly become overheated, and a fire can result. Plug space heaters directly into an appropriate wall outlet in a safe, clear location. Always check on space heaters when they are in use to ensure that everything is working correctly and that there are no issues. 

Touch the Walls Near Space Heater Outlets 

When your space heater is in use and properly plugged into a wall outlet, touch the wall near the outlet and the outlet itself to check for warmth. If the area feels warm or hot to the touch, immediately unplug the space heater and contact a professional electrician. The heat from the wall could indicate a severe electrical issue within your home. Do not use the outlet for any reason until the situation has been assessed by a professional. 

Check on Space Heaters While in Use 

Space heaters are equipped with several safety features. However, they should still be monitored while in use. Since they are so easy to use and convenient, it can be tempting to turn them on and forget about them. But even in the best situations, accidents do happen, and it only takes a moment to make sure that they are working properly and that everything is OK. 

Make Sure Your Home’s Smoke Detectors are Working 

This is something you will want to make sure of all the time, of course, but before you put space heaters into use for the season, double-check to make sure that your smoke detectors are all in good working order. This will ensure that should an accident occur, your home and your family will be safe. 


Space heaters are a handy, convenient way to supplement your home’s heat, but keep in mind that they are not meant to be the primary source of heat. They are not designed to heat large areas. If you feel that your furnace is not up to par when it comes to heating your home, give Xenia Heating and Air a call at 937-708-8451 or visit us online at to schedule an appointment with one of our trained, professional HVAC technicians. We are dedicated to making sure your HVAC system is performing at optimum levels to keep you and your family warm and comfortable throughout the winter season.