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Rob Carnie: Greg Marcyniuk, Heritage Insurance on today's edition of, "Ask The Expert." Greg, it's something we've talked about before, and there's no harm in talking about it again. It's better safe than sorry. It's that time of year when it starts getting pretty cold out and a lot of people get space heaters to, you know, keep their bedrooms or their living rooms a little extra warm. The key is, just like candles, don't leave them unattended, right?
Greg Marcyniuk: That's correct, Rob. In fact, it's the leading cause of home fires in Canada from December through to February. So if you are planning on using a space heater for the additional warmth this winter, just keep these following safety precautions in mind. First of all, when you take your space heater out for use, make sure that you dust it off, check it for any damage.
If there is any damage, you should really replace the bottle, get a new one. And yeah, the thing is with a newer model, they do have built-in safety features. As well they are typically a little more efficient so it'll save you money. Set your heater on a dry, flat table surface, and don't set it up on a shelf or a stool.
The other thing is don't use your space heaters to warm your bedding, or thaw pipes, or drying clothing just, that's where they get a lot of fires. As well, select space heaters with a CSA, which is the Canadian Standards Association, and that signifies that the product was tested for potential safety hazards. Also, when you do purchase a unit, make sure it has an automatic shut-off feature and heating element guards.
Keep your items away from potentially source of fire, at least 3 feet away, and turn off your space heaters when you leave the room or when you go to sleep. Make sure you check for frayed insulation, broken wires, and overheating of electrical space heaters. And if you do notice any of these problems, either replace it or have the unit serviced immediately.
Avoid using extension cords with space heaters, and if you have to, make sure that you have the right gauge size for the type of the heater. And, again, always keep safety in mind and avoid placing space heaters in the high-traffic areas of your home, and units with any long cords can also present a tripping hazard. So just a few tips here for the space heaters.
Rob Carnie: For these tips and more, we can go to your website.
Greg Marcyniuk: That's correct, nohassleinsurance.ca, or come on down to the corner of Fairford and First West and any of our fine people would be happy to provide a copy of this for you.
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