Grassfires have threatened homes as Victorians face the state's most challenging fire conditions since Black Saturday.
Firefighters stopped several grassfires that had threatened communities on day one of a four-day heatwave.
On Tuesday evening many areas remained on high alert for fires, including the popular beachside tourist towns of Dromana, Rosebud, Arthurs Seat and McCrae.
Spot fires and ember attacks were reported behind homes in the area of the McCrae fire.
The State Control Centre says there has been property damage but it's yet to confirm whether homes have been affected.
It was one of several small fires to flare in the afternoon heat.
Fire Services Commissioner Craig Lapsley said temperatures had increased and the wind speed was a little stronger than had been forecast.
"Hopefully our first attack will work so that none of those (fires) get to any significant size and so far the success rate has been very good," he said.
Temperatures in the 40s are forecast until the end of Friday and Mr Lapsley said an expected southwesterly wind change would make Friday the peak fire-danger day.
"We will see very strong winds in the afternoon, with a southwesterly change late in the day moving through central Victoria."
He said Friday's fire conditions would not match those of 2009's Black Saturday, when 173 people died.
"At the moment the forecast would indicate extreme fire danger, not code red fire danger," he said.
Acting Premier Peter Ryan said Victorians faced challenging conditions ahead.
"These next four days promise to be amongst the most significant that we have faced in Victoria since Black Saturday," he told reporters.
"We are alive to the fact that we face these challenges over the course of these coming four days, including today, but on the other hand we are well prepared. We are ready to go."
Mr Ryan said Victoria, one of the most fire-prone locations on earth, was vastly better prepared for fire than it was five years ago.
Temperatures reached 46C in some northern areas on Tuesday, while closer to Melbourne the mercury hit 45.8C at Avalon near Geelong.
Firefighters stopped the spread of a grassfire that was heading towards the nearby town of Little River.
Other fires flared at Sunbury and Diggers Rest on Melbourne's northwestern outskirts.
Firefighters stopped the spread of a grassfire threatening the town of Kangaroo Ground on the northeastern outskirts.
During the emergency warning CFA spokesman Mick Harris said about 1000 people and 300 houses were in the direct area of the fire.
Mr Harris said some firefighters were treated for heat stress during Tuesday's fires.
Total fire bans have been declared for most regions, in effect for Mallee, Wimmera, south west, northern country, north central, central, and West and South Gippsland on Wednesday.