Can I Use A Heavy Duty Extension Cord With Space Heater – Learn From Experts

Even though you can keep warm by wearing warm clothing while it’s freezing outside. Excessive temperatures might make you uncomfortable and your condition will be worse during winter when everywhere seems cold. To bring warmth to the rooms, you can opt for a space heater. But When installing a space heater you need to take extra precautions, especially if you want to use it with a Heavy Duty Extension Cord. Here we will go through details about additional aspects of using a heavy duty extension cord with a space heater and what to avoid if you use it.

So, let’s get started.

Can I use an Extension Cord with a Space Heater?

Can I Use A Heavy Duty Extension Cord With Space Heater? Before delving much into the question, it’s good to understand that you need to be cautious while installing and using space heaters. This is because the space heater can cause accidents and serious damage from the heat it produces. 

That aside, can you use a heavy-duty extension cord with a space heater? Even though it’s not advisable to use space heaters with extension cords, there’s an exception to this. You can use a heavy-duty extension cord with your space heater. But not all heavy-duty extension cords can work with a space heater. This means you need a special heavy-duty extension cord to enable your space heater to work with ease. 

Normally space heaters require a high current supply to work. This means the extension cords can struggle to keep up with the space heater’s demands. The result of this is fire outbreaks which are a risk to your home. 

What Kind of Heavy Duty Extension Cords Can Work with Space Heaters?

You will require a heavy-duty extension cord of gauge #14 or a larger one than this. A heavy-duty extension cord with less gauge than #14 can cause fire making you go at a loss. Ensure your heavy-duty extension cord is short (not more than 20 feet) to avoid high resistance and reduce the chances of tripping. Alternatively, you can use a grounding extension cord (three-wire) if your space heater has a grounding prong. 

Measures To Take to Ensure Your Heavy Duty Cord Extension Works with Your Space Heater

Check on both their amp ratings whenever you want to use your heavy-duty extension cord with a space heater. If you’re yet to buy the extension cord, check the wires marked gauge. If it’s marked #14 and above, you can buy it. In addition, you also need to inspect the space heaters plug before taking it home. Request the shop attendant to open the box and see if the plug has a thick gauge wiring, making them safe to use. Also, check if the plug has anything plugged into it. A space heater’s plug shouldn’t have anything plugged in it.

What You Need to Do When Using the Right Heavy Duty Extension Cord with A Space Heater

To be safe, even if you’re using your space heater on a heavy-duty extension cord, use a circuit breaker. First, however, you need to be keen to identify anomalies like frequent tripping whenever you turn on your space heater. That acts as a warning sign. Most probably, it’s an indication of overloading the circuit, forcing the breaker to keep tripping to prevent you from fire. To avoid this, you can use a different outlet that’s on a different circuit. 

Read Also: Best 5 Space Heater That Won’t Trip Breaker – Reviews in 2021

Alternatively, you can reduce the load on the circuit to what it can comfortably handle. Another thing you should be quick to take action is when your space heater bursts fuse whenever you turn it on. Don’t hesitate to call your electrician to fix new services for your space heater. 

Precautions When Using Extension Cords with Space Heaters 

If you decide to use a heavy-duty extension cord with your space heater, don’t forget to follow the 32% safety precaution on fire. First, you need to ensure the space heater is not on the carpet. Instead, put it on a strong table towards the edge to avoid burning it. Another thing you should do is use your space heater after testing its efficacy during the day. Also, ensure the cord is not hot, and the heater is in the right place before sleeping. 

If you can’t get the right heavy-duty extension cord, it’s advisable to plug the space heater directly into the socket/wall outlet using an electrical cord. Some space heaters plug directly into the wall outlet without using an electrical cord. You should opt for them to prevent uncertainties. 

Why Use of Extension Cords with Space Heaters Are Highly Discouraged

Most extension cords, including some heavy-duty ones, have small wiring that can’t supply the needed power the space heater requires. The wire’s length also contributes to high resistance, which results in heat on the cords. High heat accumulation is dangerous and can cause fire, common among most people who don’t follow the space heater’s user guidelines. 

To avoid such occurrences, it’s advisable not to use extension cords, especially if you don’t know the wire gauge. You also need to look at the maximum amp rating of the extension cord to see if it’s compatible with your space heater. For example, if your extension cord has an amp rating of 10 and your space heaters are 12.5 amps, these two are incompatible. 

Apart from these, having extension cords with long cables in your house can make people accidentally fall. This is very risky if you have small kids around who might not know the dangers of being in contact with electricity. And if the space heater also falls in the process, it can spoil or burn the person that tripped accidentally. Or melt something that’s within its reach if it has not cooled down.  

In The End

There’s a lot of debate on whether you can use a heavy-duty extension cord with a space heater. Some people argue that it’s not safe to use any extension cord, while others say using a heavy-duty extension cord is safe. For whichever stand you pick, you need to know that space heaters draw a lot of currents than most extension cords can sustain. 

Also, a heavy-duty extension cord is likely to get hot, increasing the risks of fire. So, you need to be cautious and use it only if you’ve no option. This should be regardless if you know the space heater’s safety ratings, amp rating, or wire gauge requirement. Remember, a thicker gauge wiring may seem safer but doesn’t guarantee you 100% safety.

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