Space heater safety

Learn about using space heaters safely

Space heaters help to keep us warm in winter. But space heaters can also cause deadly fires. Find out how to use space heaters safely.

Using space heaters safely

  • Keep space heaters 3 feet away from drapes, furniture or other things that can burn.
  • Put heaters on a level surface away from places where someone might bump into it and knock it over.
  • Avoid using extension cords. If you must use an extension cord, use a heavy duty one marked with a power rating at least as high as that of the heater itself.
  • Never leave a space heater unattended.
  • Never leave a space heater on while you sleep.
  • Supervise children and pets near space heaters.
  • Buy heaters that are tested and labeled by a nationally recognized testing company, such as Underwriter’s Laboratories Inc.(UL).
  • Keep electric heaters away from water. Never use them near a sink or in the bathroom.
  • Never use an unvented kerosene heater. It is illegal to sell or use them in Massachusetts.
  • Read a brochure in English or Spanish about space heater safety for additional tips.


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