Fire prevention tips for space heatersFargo, ND (WDAY TV) - With the colder temperatures quickly approaching, it may be time to start thinking about space heaters, but with ownership comes responsibility.
By: Brian Abel, WDAY
Fargo, ND (WDAY TV) - With the colder temperatures quickly approaching, it may be time to start thinking about space heaters, but with ownership comes responsibility.
Our thermostats are dipping lower and lower each day, and with the colder weather, many are heading to the store shelves to find home heating solutions.
Scheels Electrical Manager Monte Koffler says precautions are necessary.
Monte Koffler- Scheels Electrical Manager: "Keep it in its own space. You should have at least a couple of feet around a space heater so that it’s safe."
Heaters with new technology, like infrared, are making ownership safer. David Ehlers has used a space heater without issue for years.
David Ehlers- Space Heater Owner: "It has a vent in front of it. It can't burn your hands even if you touch it."
Koffler, however, says fire can still arise.
Koffler: "Probably the most common cause of fires with heaters is using extension cords. Most heaters recommend that you don't use an extension cord."
If you must use an extension cord, don't use one of these little small ones because, well, they can melt. Make sure you use a heavy duty at least 14-gauge one.
Koffler: “Not following these guidelines can have serious consequences.”
This North Fargo home started on fire in February, and investigators believe space heaters were the cause.
The US Consumer Product Safety Commission says 25,000 residential fires a year are caused by space heaters, resulting in more than 300 deaths.