A look at some popular internet solutions to coping with cold weather during power outages / blackouts and their inherent risks.
Alright today on Repairs101 I’m going to go over some of the options that exist for when the power is out and your heat is off.

Fireplace safety


You know, not very long ago every dwelling had a fireplace or hearth for cooking, heating or both. Once iron and steel were developed open fireplaces fell out of fashion because they have a tendency to spit hot embers out while people are sleeping and houses burned to the ground. People died. It was a serious problem. 
Nowadays fire is generally kept safe and secure inside fireproof steel boxes where neither cats nor basketballs can upset them and unleash the horrific power of fire.
Every year people die from carbon monoxide poisoning and asphyxiation because of improperly exhausted emergency heaters. 
An open flame is extremely dangerous and not advisable unless every precaution is taken to control and monitor the flame. 
We’re told that propane, butane, kerosene, alcohol, olive oil and paraffin are all safe for indoor use – given adequate ventilation. 
These beer can stoves, pop can stoves, soda can stoves, penny can stoves whatever you like to call them - they are awesome little devices but they are best used outdoors; as you can see this one got out of control very quickly.

Flaming beercan / penny stove  Flowerpot / tealight stove


Now the internet is full of flower pot heater DIY’s and pre-fabricated earthenware heaters but the bottom line is that they will only generate as much heat as you give them fuel for. 
I ran this experiment several times and I just kept adding more and more candles because I wasn’t satisfied with the amount of heat that it was giving off. 
Here’s what happens when you get a dozen or so together after about an hour and a half has elapsed. Not enough heat to warm the room but plenty enough fire to burn the house down. 
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