Space heaters are often viewed as a way to cut down on the heating bill and ad warmth to any room.

But some users of these heaters are oblivious to the dangers that may loom if they aren’t used properly.

E.S.C.A.P.E.‘s founder / president and former president of the Michigan State Firemen’s Association and 20 year fire safety veteran Michael McLeieer, tells WBKB 11 in Alpena why space heaters should be used sparingly.

“If space heaters are used as a primary heating source that puts our family at risk because those space heaters can overload, or if those space heaters are left on when we’re not at home, a fire could occur.”

Nearly two thirds of winter house fires are caused by heating homes improperly.

Here are McLeieer’s tips to ensure your space heater is not a fire safety hazard.

“Space heaters need space, they need at least three feet of space from anything that can catch fire, that could be clothing, that could be our furniture, and as we have now the winter weather before us, we want to make sure that people aren’t putting gloves or things like that to dry on the space heater because that’s a way that could catch those items on fire.”

Space heaters should never be left unattended under any circumstance.