Still feeling cold even with the space heater turned on? Confirm that indeed the heater is still on.
It is not uncommon to have a space heater turning off after only a few minutes of operation!
You could guard against this by switching on another heater as a backup and setting it at a temperature below which you wouldn’t want to room to drop too.
But this doesn’t address the underlying reason why the heater may be turning itself off.
To find out why the heater may not be staying on and how to fix it, read on.
Why your Space Heater Doesn’t Stay On? What Checks to Do?
If the heater shuts off after a few minutes of operation, it may be because of the following:
1. If connected to a Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI) protected circuit, that the GFCI is tripping. Check if the heater is plugged into a GFCI-protected outlet.
Some manufacturers like Vornado recommend against plugging a heater into a GFCI-protected outlet as it may trip even with no fault detected leaving you in the cold!
Check if the heater stays on when plugged into a non-GFCI outlet. If it does, then it might be an issue with the GFCI breaker.
Confirm if the manufacturer and local electric code for your area recommend the use of the GFCI outlet for a heater.
If not, plug the heater into a non-GFCI-protected outlet.
2. The electric circuit supplying the breaker is tripping. Does the circuit breaker for the circuit that the heater is connected to stay on when the heater turns off?
If it goes off then there’s likely an underlying fault such as:
- a fault in the heater (or power cord),
- wiring from the wall outlet to the breaker, or
- the breaker itself that’s causing the breaker to trip.
Unplug the heater and check it still turns off. If it does then there’s likely an issue with the wiring. Perhaps, the insulation is damaged.
In some cases, the breaker has been known to trip intermittently, moreover at irregular intervals because of water or moisture that causes a short’s or damaged power cord insulation.
3. The heater is faulty. The heater may be malfunctioning and needs to be serviced or replaced.
If the wiring and GFCI check out fine then there’s a strong possibility that it’s the heater.
Contact the manufacturer or a qualified HVAC technician for support.
You may also be interested in this post: How much electricity a 500-watt heater uses?
Why a Space Heater Turns on And Off Repeatedly?
If the space heater turns on and off repeatedly, it may be:
- that the thermostat temperature is set too low,
- the thermostat is faulty causing the heater to overheat and shut off.
Contact the heater manufacturer or a qualified HVAC for support.
If the heater keeps turning off, it could be an issue with the wiring (power cord), or that the heater is faulty too.
Check if the heater is plugged into a GFCI outlet. A GFCI outlet can fail and start tripping randomly.