Four Alternative Heating Methods and How to Use Them Safely

    (Provided by Steven Nameroff - Monday, March 03, 2014)



When your power goes out, it can often leave you stranded without heat. Here are four alternative heating methods, and tips on how to safely implement them.

1. Fireplace
The creosote buildup in the chimney of a fireplace calls for regular cleanings and inspections. Any sort of obstruction or crack may cause a deadly chimney and roof fire. Never burn trash, paper or greenwood in your fireplace, because they can cause heavy creosote build up and create fires that are quite difficult to control.

If starting a fire, make sure the damper is open, and that you have a screen heavy enough to stop rolling logs and to catch flying sparks. Never use flammable liquid to start a fire, and use only seasoned hardwood. When your fire has gone out, make sure you let the ashes cool down before disposing of them in a tightly covered metal container.

2. Space Heater
Make sure that any space heater you buy has been evaluated by a recognized laboratory. Never plug your space heater into an extension chord or power strip, and always unplug it when its not in use. Remember that space heaters need at least three- feet space in all directions, so don’t place any items too close to it.

3. Kerosene Heater
Make sure to only buy laboratory-evaluated heaters, and never fill the heater with gasoline or stove fuel. Instead,use only crystal clear K-1 kerosene or manufacturer- recommended fuel.

Always allow the heater to cool before refueling.

4.Portable Generators
Although portable generators are useful for temporary power, they’re quite hazardous. The primary dangers are carbon monoxide poisoning, electric shock, and fire. Always use generators outdoors, away from doors and windows, and follow manufacturers instructions. Keep the generator dry and never plug the generator into a wall outlet.


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