The winter weather has officially hit the Hampton Roads/Gloucester area. With snow this month and more on the horizon staying warm in your home has become a priority once again. Staying warm can mean different things to everyone. For some it may mean cranking up the heat for others it may mean using space heaters. As HVAC experts we’d like to address space heaters, what they are, why they can be dangerous, and why you should consider other ways of keeping warm. If you’re someone that uses a space heater this blog will be a great educational read.
Let’s get started…
What are Space Heaters?
Space heaters are small portable devices that are typically used to heat small spaces. The two common types are electric and combustion space heaters. We’re going to focus on the electric space heaters in this blog. Below is a brief look at the 4 common types of electric space heaters.
- Ceramic: This is a radiant space heater meaning it radiates heat even after it’s been turned off
- Oil-filled: This is similar to the ceramic except it’s heated by oil instead of ceramic plates.
- Convection: These diffuse the heat into a space typically with the use of a fan. These circulate heat better than radiant space heaters.
- Infrared: This is another radiant space heater that is powered by infrared light that produces heat.
Space heaters can be used to warm your home or workspace during the cooler months especially in an area that isn’t well insulated. Space heaters can also have fans which help to move the warm air.
While space heaters work great to keep you warm, they are a danger to your home. Approximately 1,200 home fires a year are caused by a space heater. This is because these devices get HOT. This seems obvious, but as we go about our daily lives we can forget just how hot these devices get. Meaning we don’t leave enough space around them, set them close to combustible items, or forget to unplug them. All of these things can lead to a higher risk of fire in your home. Another danger is plugging electric space heaters into extension cords instead of directly into the wall. These devices require such a large amount of energy that plugging them into extension cords can be dangerous, it’s much safer to plug them into an outlet directly.
Why Are They Dangerous?
Alternative Ways to Keep Warm
Here are some fun ways to keep warm without the use of a space heater.
- Bundle up in some fuzzy socks and a soft sweater.
- Use a blanket or even a heated blanket to stay warm.
- Consider closing off unused rooms in your home to keep the cool air from circulating.
- Light some candles
- Cook…make your favorite dinner or dessert. The oven/stove will keep you warm.
- Exercise, getting your heart rate up will increase your temperature.
No matter how you plan on keeping warm this winter we encourage you to do it safely. We hope these tips and information were helpful to you! Should you have any heating concerns this winter give our experts a call. A/C Masters is available 24/7 to assist with your heating and HVAC needs. Call (757) 847-5252 today.