You should never plug this appliance into a power strip, firefighters warn.
While summer and fall might be sunny and warm, the fact remains that very soon, the weather will get much colder. Thus, the space heater season is inevitable.
That's why firefighters are emphasizing the importance of one electricity safety tip.
Never Plug Your Space Heater Into A Power Strip
Taking to social media, Umatilla County Fire District #1 in Hermiston, Oregon, recently warned, posting a photo of a fried multi-outlet to prove their point:
"You should never plug a heater into a power strip."
"These units are not designed to handle the high current flow needed for a space heater and can overheat or even catch fire due to the added energy flow."
The post went viral, with thousands admitting they were unaware of the fire hazards this practice can bring.
Know The Limits Of Your Power Strip!
As it turns out, the Oregon fire department isn't the only one sharing power strip safety tips.
The Toledo Fire Department in Ohio also issued a similar statement after a house caught fire due to the misuse of a space heater. The couch caught fire from the heater, and the flames quickly spread throughout the house.
Keep in mind that you should never overload your power strips because that is when they cause fires. According to the fire department, space heaters can reach up to 600 degrees Fahrenheit, so it's essential for everyone who uses them to do it safely.
Some space heater safety tips from the fire department include:
1. Instead of plugging a space heater into a power strip, always plug them directly into a wall unit.
2. When using space heaters, ensure you're always in the room, keeping an eye on it. You should never leave it unattended while working.
3. Place heaters on level, flat surfaces. Never place them on cabinets, tables, furniture, or carpet, as they can overheat and start a fire.
4. Keep space heaters three feet away from anything that can burn.
How Can You Prevent Electrical Fires At Home
Apart from updating your electrical system, here are ways to prevent electric fire hazards in your home.
1. Extension Cords Are Meant For Temporary Use Only
Don't use extension cords 24/7. They are meant only for temporary use. Contact an electrician to install additional outlets if you require them.
2. Unplug All Heat-producing Appliances When Not In Use
Such appliances include heaters, kettles, and hairstyling tools. These appliances can catch fire when they overheat or in the event of a malfunction or electrical surge.
3. Never Use Damaged Power Cords
If the power cord is frayed, loose from its plug, cracked, or has a broken prong, don't use it.
4. Update Two-Pronged Outlets At Home With Third Prongs
The third prong on a power cord is meant to protect against power surges and malfunctions.
5. Read The Manuals And Follow Appliance Directions
Appliances always come with a manual that includes a fire safety section and is not just there for optimal use. They are there to keep you safe.