Cold weather may heat up problems inside your home

Chimney on a house in Piedmont

PIEDMONT, S.D. (KEVN) - According to the Environmental Protection Agency, 53-thousand homes across the country caught on fire in 2011 due to heating equipment.

They also say the leading factor contributing to home heating fires was failure to clean chimneys.

The fire department recommends you have your fireplace professionally cleaned before you use it and to burn the right wood.

But chimneys are not the only fire hazard in your house.

Steven Monteforte is a PIO for the Piedmont Fire Department.

"When it comes to space heaters, it's very easy for something if there's a blanket hanging off the counter that could possibly catch or anything like that they can never be left unattended," said Monteforte. "If you leave unplug them, but definitely be aware that with space heaters they can become very dangerous."

If anything does catch on fire make sure to call 9-1-1.