(WOIO) - Many of us use space heaters to keep warm, especially in drafty, older homes. Experts warn of precautions everyone should take to stay safe.
Tom Terry is searching for a space heater for his home, but unfortunately, he's come up empty.
"They're all out over here. We got one furnace in the house and in the other part of the house, we use this other heater, and that went out," says Terry.
The shelves are bare at the Brooklyn
and more than a dozen other of their stores in the Cleveland area. Employees say last week alone they sold more than 60 space heaters. They're having a tough time keeping up with the demand.
"It's been crazy. Every time we get them in off the truck, customers are waiting for them, giving us their phone numbers to call them when they come in. As soon as we pull them out and onto the floor, even before we stack them on the shelf, people are taking them off the palate," says Parma Lowe's assistant store manager, Adam Callahan.
's Doug Turner says if not used properly, space heaters can be dangerous.
"Follow manufacturers recommendations. Keep a 3-feet area around and clear. Keep kids and pets clear of it. Don't use extension cords with the heater," says Turner.
Firefighters want to remind people no matter what, you should always have working carbon monoxide and smoke detectors in your home, especially if you're using a space heater.
Turner says your best bet is to bundle up with blankets.
Terry hopes he can warm up with a heater -- that's if he can get his hands on one.
"I'm going to have to do something. Probably stop at another store," he says.
Experts say check to make sure your space heater has a "UL" safety stamp on it.
Another safety reminder from the fire department: Don't use your oven to warm your home.