Keeping your home safe and warm

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Grand Blanc (WJRT) (1/3/18) Sometimes when the weather turns cold there may be a room or two in your home that seems chilly. But before you plug in a space heater, make sure it doesn't become a fire hazard.

With the frigid temperatures we've been experiencing recently a lot of people are tempted to use space heaters to take the edge off the cold. But there are a lot of potential dangers with these.

"A space heater is to be plugged directly into a wall outlet, never into an extension cord or power strip," said Bob Burdette, Grand Blanc Fire Chief.

Plugging two space heaters into one outlet is a bad idea. They draw a tremendous amount of power and could cause a fire in the wall. Also make sure anything that could catch fire is kept well away from a space heater.

"You have a fan on these and the drape could be sucked into the inlet, you're going to have a problem so make sure that anything combustible is well away from these," said Burdette.

For those who have a wood burning stove, the same rule applies. Keep anything that could burn at least three feet away from the stove.

Don't use green wood or wet wood. That creates a lot of creosote that can build up in the chimney system. You could have a chimney fire at that point. If you're using the wood burning stove for heating your home I would have it cleaned at least once every other month," said Burdette.

There's another supplemental heat source many use but it's extremely dangerous.Turning on stove burners or the oven has lead to many accidental fires and burns.

Gas ranges or even electric rangers are not designed for heating homes. There's a lot of issues there.

And if you are going to use supplemental heat make sure you have smoke detector and carbon monoxide detector properly installed.

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