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Keeping Warm: Alternate Heating Source Safety Tips | Home & Garden

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Keeping Warm: Alternate Heating Source Safety Tips
Home & Garden, News

From Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department:

The fall and winter are upon us. The cooler temperatures cause many of us to seek out alternative sources to heat our home and keep warm. Alternate heating sources are a major contributing factor in residential fires. The following safety tips will help you keep a safe home.

  • Keep at least three feet of clearance between your heat source and anything combustible.
  • Do not keep or store combustible materials in closed areas or near a heat source.
  • Never leave a heater on when you are not in the room or when you go to sleep, and never leave children or pets unattended near heating sources.
  • If you use an electric heater, be careful not to overload the electrical circuit.
  • Avoid using electrical heaters in bathrooms as they may come in contact with water.
  • Only use heaters that have been tested to the latest safety standards and certified by a nationally recognized testing laboratory, such as Underwriters Laboratories (UL). These heaters will have the most up-to-date safety features, such as automatic shut-offs. It is important to install and use heaters according to manufacturer’s recommendations. 
  • Do not use a range or oven as an alternate heating source. This is a safety hazard and may be a source of toxic fumes.
  • Do not use fuel burning appliances without the proper room ventilation.
  • Never fill a kerosene heater while it is in operation or hot. Avoid overfilling.
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