Home Heating Safety

Home Heating Safety

Home heaters are the second leading cause of residential fires in the US. Readout tips to stay safe while warming up your home.

  • From 2013-2015, an average of 45,900 home heating fires occurred in the United States each year. These fires caused an annual average of approximately 205 deaths, 725 injuries and $506 million in property loss.
  • Home heating fires peaked in the early evening hours between 5 and 9 p.m. with the highest peak between 6 and 8 p.m. This four-hour period accounted for 29 percent of all home heating fires.
  • Twenty-nine percent of the nonconfined home heating fires happened because the heat source (like a space heater or fireplace) was too close to things that can burn.

Space Heater Fire Prevention Tips

  • Keep anything that can burn at least three feet away from space heaters
  • Always turn off space heaters at night, as they can easily be knocked over in the dark
  • Always turn off and unplug your space heaters before you exit the room
  • Always have at least a three-foot “kids-free zone” around space heaters
  • Always plug them directly into an outlet, not to an extension cord or power strip

Furnace Fire Prevention Tips

  • It’s important to change your furnace filter regularly.
  • Never store combustibles or flammable items in the same room as heating appliances. This includes rags, mops, paper, and other items that can quickly catch fire.
  • You should have a qualified professional check your heating appliances at least once a year.
  • Be sure to install and maintain carbon monoxide detectors in your home, which will help alert you of a gas leak.

San Diego Gas & Electric offers customers free safety checks to make sure home gas appliances are operating safely and efficiently. Customers can schedule an appointment by calling SDG&E at 800-411-7343 or by visiting the “Check My Appliances” link on SDG&E’s website.