You must know about chimney maintenance if you own and operate any fireplace. Like your vehicle, your fireplace and chimney require routine maintenance for efficiency and to extend its lifespan. Failure to consider this may put your family at risk and lead to unnecessary expenses. Below are some important chimney maintenance tips you should know.
How Frequently Should You Maintain Your Chimney Systems?
It would be best to inspect your chimney flue at least once a year, and sweep if necessary. This is the minimum recommendation for proper upkeep. You can do this as often as possible, depending on your convenience or how frequently you use your chimney.
How To Identify That You Should Consider Chimney Care
Specific factors can help you determine whether you should sweep and inspect your chimney. You should know about these warning signs. Otherwise, you’ll be putting your family at risk of fires or carbon monoxide entry.
Some of these signs are as follows:
- Odors: This includes detecting the smell of burning wood coming from the fireplace even when it’s not lit
- Odd fire burns: When you light a fire in your fireplace, you usually notice that it doesn’t burn as well as it used to when new.
- Taking more effort to keep your fire going: Lighting fire in a clogged chimney takes more time since it restricts airflow. Fire requires oxygen to burn.
- Damp and black fireplace: When you notice a black and damp fireplace, it indicates creosote buildup. Creosote is a buildup of flaky and soft soot. It condenses to a hard, shiny substance that clings to the chimney surface in its advanced stages.
- Oily marks on the fireplace walls: The presence of oily marks on the fireplace walls also shows that there’s creosote present.
- Presence of animals: If you hear animal noises coming from the chimney or see bird nests, it means that your chimney has a damaged or missing a chimney cap. You’ll most likely find birds and squirrels, the most common culprits in chimneys.
- Moisture: A musty odor around a fireplace can indicate moisture intrusion. Other moisture signs are darkening of the walls due to moisture presence or white milky residue on the fireplace walls call efflorescence.
Tips for Chimney Care
Now that you understand some of the signs that prove your chimney needs an inspection annually, here are some of the tips for chimney care you should factor in:
Inspect You Chimney Annually
It is recommended by the Chimney Safety Institute of America to have your chimney inspected annually and swept if needed. Even an unused fireplace is important to inspect for possible animal infestation or damage causing water intrusion.
Look Out for Cracks
Cracked chimney bricks may lead to water leakage and damage. Repairing water damage alone can be expensive. Therefore, if you find this kind of damage, it’s best to hire a repair company to handle the problem.
Fix Your Stinky Chimney With Common Household Items
If you find a foul odor from your fireplace, creosote deposits are more likely to cause the problem. In that case, you can use baking soda, vinegar or commercial chimney deodorant to help subside the smell until you have the fireplace inspected professionally.
Waterproof the Chimney
Waterproofing your chimney is a smart way to avoid any water damage. It is recommended to waterproof yor chimney every three years. If you had previously waterproofed your chimney, it’s recommendable to check whether it’s compromised and repair it as soon as possible.
Keep Your Family Safe by Maintaining Your Chimney
You need to keep your chimney in its best condition to keep your family safe and avoid issues that may result from poor conditions. inspecting the chimney regularly and undertaking necessary maintenance measures will help keep the chimney in prime condition.
By considering the many tips provided in this post, you’ll be in a better position to guarantee the efficiency and safety needed while using your fireplace.
When you’re looking for a reliable chimney inspection, chimney repairs, and other maintenance services, look no further than Chim Chimney!
Contact us if you have any questions, or call us at 615-364-8987 to schedule a service!
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