Secondary heating sources like fireplaces, wood burning stoves, space heaters, or electric blankets can produce comfortable heat for smaller, more targeted areas of your home. They can be especially useful for heating rooms that tend to be cooler than the rest of your home, or for enduring the occasional chilly night. These heat sources also pose their own unique risks, and it's important to take safety precautions when using them.
While it can't heat a whole home, the fireplace can provide a comfortable and aesthetically pleasing space for a few people, even if the thermostat is turned down to a cool temperature.
Fireplaces and chimneys require regular maintenance, so conducting an annual chimney inspection and cleaning is crucial. A careful inspection can catch cracks that might leak dangerous gases into your home, and a thorough cleaning removes the buildup of creosote, a residue that can catch fire if ignited by a spark.
Other tips include:
Though not as popular in the modern era as fireplaces, wood-burning stoves have their own aesthetic appeal and are still used as efficient heat sources in many homes and cabins. Like fireplaces, these stoves must be connected to chimneys, which require annual inspection and cleaning.
Consider the following:
When it comes to safety, space heaters have come a long way in recent years. Some older models increased the risk of house fires, particularly models operated with liquid fuel. Today's space heaters are mostly electric and often have built-in safety features that turn the heaters off if they tip over, overheat, or have been left turned on for too long.
As economical as they are cozy, electric blankets can provide comfort all night even with the heat down low.
Be sure to: