Paul Davis Restoration of Union & Essex Counties, a leading provider of fire and water damage clean up and restoration services, provides consumers with safety tips when using portable electric heaters also known as space heaters in cold weather months. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) and the United States Fire Administration (USFA) estimates these types of heaters are involved in thousands of fires each year resulting in deaths, injuries and millions of dollars in property loss.
Paul Davis offers the following tips to help prevent fires from space heaters:
- Never operate a heater you suspect is damaged: Before use, inspect the heater, cord, and plug for possible damage. Follow all operation and maintenance instructions.
- To see if your electric heater has been recalled: Visit cpsc.org.
- Never leave the heater operating while unattended, or while you are sleeping.
- Keep combustible material such as beds, sofas, curtains, papers, and clothes at least three feet from the front, sides, and rear of the heater.
- Be sure the heater plug fits tightly into the wall outlet. If not, do not use the outlet to power the heater.
- During use, check frequently to determine if the heater plug or cord, wall outlet, or faceplate is hot. If the plug, outlet, or faceplate is hot, discontinue use of the heater.
- Have a qualified electrician check and/or replace the plug or faulty wall outlet(s). If the cord is hot, disconnect the heater and have it inspected/repaired by an authorized repair person.
- Never power the heater with an extension cord or power strip.
- Insure that the heater is placed on a stable, level surface, and located where it will not be knocked over.
- When purchasing a heater, ask the salesperson whether the heater has been safety-certified. A certified heater will have a safety certification mark.
- Never run the heater’s cord under rugs or carpeting. This can damage the cord, causing it and nearby objects to burn.
- To prevent electrical shocks and electrocutions, always keep electric heaters away from water, and never touch an electric heater if you are wet. In case of fire or emergency property damage, contact a licensed, professional fire damage clean up and restoration company.
Paul Davis is a leading provider of fire, water and mold damage restoration and reconstruction services for residential and commercial properties. Local office owners nationwide are properly licensed individuals with certifications from leading industry organizations like The Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC). Founded in 1966, Paul Davis has restoration, remodeling and emergency services franchise office locations throughout the US and Canada. Visit the local office website at union-and-essex-counties.pauldavis.com.