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Couch on FireElectric space heaters are often great ways to warm yourself and your home when it is cold outside. However, space heaters are sensitive equipment. Like other sources of heat, they pose a fire risk to your home and your family. In fact, space heaters have been responsible for about 79 percent of fatalities in home fires.

It's clear that space heaters can cause devastation if you don't know how to safely handle them. And even if your homeowners insurance covers fires, it is likely you don't want to see your home go up in flames. As such, you should always practice safe handling techniques when using a space heater.

Space Heater Safety Tips

  • Do not lay flammable items like clothes, blankets or papers on or near the space heater.
  • Keep space heaters away from other household items like beds and furniture. Some experts recommend you keep your space heater three feet away from other items.
  • Make sure that the cord and plug of your space heater are not frayed or worn.
  • Consider buying a space heater with an automatic shutoff mechanism. If these heaters tip over, they will turn off — thereby reducing the risk of fire.
  • Dust your space heater and wipe it down. This will prevent a spark from igniting particles on the heater.
  • Keep your space heater on a hard, flat surface to keep it from sliding or tipping. Do not let a space heater sit directly on carpet. Raise the space heater or put it on a non-flammable surface.
  • Always use the correct fuel if your space heater is fuel-burning. Clean and service this type of heater regularly. Do not use it if you smell gas or have a leak.
  • Do not use your space heater when you are sleeping.
  • Turn off your space heater when you leave the room. Do not leave it running while unattended.
Unsafe use of a space heater can lead to destruction or even death. However, with proper care, a space heater can help keep you stay comfortable, even when there's a chill in the air.

Have you looked at your homeowners insurance policy recently? Call TCU Insurance Agency today at (800) 772-8043 for a free home insurance quote.
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