It’s always ideal to get a chimney inspection just as the winter season rolls in. Why is this important? Read all the details here.
As the winter season is finally here, you’ll need to think about taking care of your chimney. Your fireplace is made for the colder months, as you gather the family around it and spend time together. The problem is though, if the chimney hasn’t been checked then it can actually turn into a safety risk.
Here’s why you need to get a chimney inspection this winter before you get that roaring fire going.
Remove All Obstructions Before You Use Your Fireplace
One of the most important reasons for getting a chimney inspection is because there could well be obstructions in the chimney, and they can cause real problems if you light a fire. As the smoke and gases can’t escape because of obstructions, then you’ll find carbon monoxide comes back into your home, causing serious health issues or even death.
Those obstructions can be things like leaves and branches from storms, or they can be from pests. There are all kinds of animals that like to get into your fireplace and get cozy. Birds, bats, and squirrels are just a few examples. If you try and start a fire in your fireplace, when your flue is blocked by animals or nesting materials, that can actually cause a house fire.
Some people may advise simply burning pests out if you know something is nesting in your chimney, but that is way too dangerous to try. Instead, you want to call on a chimney expert that can remove pests and blockages for you, clearing the flue ready for winter.
Avoid House Fires
We mentioned house fires above, but there are other ways your fireplace could actually cause ablaze if it isn’t inspected. For example, take a look at the walls of your fireplace and chimney right now. Can you see a black, tar-like substance on them? That’s called creosote, and it’s a compound that collects in your chimney when you burn wood. It’s highly flammable, so burning a fire in your fireplace, without cleaning this out, can lead to house fires.
That’s why it’s so important to book an inspection before burning season. Your inspector can see if any creosote has built up in your chimney, and arrange to have it cleaned out before you use the fireplace. It’s usually best to have an expert handle it, as it can be very difficult to remove on your own. As creosote is so flammable and burns for such long periods of time, it’s something you want to handle now.
Check For Any Structural Issues
Just like the rest of your home, your chimney may have suffered some structural issues over time, and so will be unsafe to use. As you can’t see most of your chimney though, you can’t be aware of the issues until you actually have it inspected.
There are lots of different aspects to your chimney, such as the crown, the flue, the bricks and mortar, and the damper system. They all have to be in good condition in order to be working properly. When they are all in good condition, you’ll be able to light fires in your fireplace safely.
This all needs to be checked before the winter though, as any issues will lead to it being unsafe. For example, a cracked chimney cap or damaged flue liner will be highly unsafe. An inspector can check for any of these issues, and if they find any you can have them fixed before you use the fireplace.
Meet Your Insurance Requirements
Like any good homeowner, you need to have home insurance in place to cover any issues that you may have in the future. What you may not know is that if you have a fireplace, most insurers will expect you to have it inspected and cleaned by an expert once a year. There are many people every year that don’t find this out until they have a house fire, and find their home insurance won’t pay out because of it.
As such, it’s vital that you have the chimney inspected before winter. As well as all the safety issues mentioned above, you’ll also want to ensure that you’ll be covered, should the worst happen and you need your home insurance to payout.
Increase The Lifespan Of Your Flue Liner
Your flue liner is one of the most important parts of your chimney, as it’s the number one line of defense against house fires. It insulates the chimney, protecting it from high temperatures and any corrosive chemicals in the smoke. It will also prevent carbon monoxide from making its way into your home, so you know it’s important.
When you have your chimney inspected, your inspector will check the chimney to ensure that there are no issues with the flue liner. Creosote and soot can build upon it and deteriorate it over time, so they can get it cleaned off, increasing the lifespan and efficiency of the liner.
Improve Overall Efficiency
When you light a fire in your fireplace, you want to get the most heat possible from it. An efficient fire will create less smoke and produce more heat. That means you’ll get a safer burn for less, as you won’t need to use as much fuel.
If you get your chimney inspected before you want to use the fireplace, then you can make sure you’re getting the most efficient burn. The inspector will find any issues and help you put them right. They’ll also help you get the chimney cleaned, so there’s no build-up that you have to deal with. That not only makes the fireplace more efficient but safer to use, too.
Book Your Chimney Inspection
You can see there are so many reasons why you should have your chimney inspected before the winter. An unclean or damaged chimney can lead to house fires or health problems, making it highly dangerous. Of course, you want to avoid that however possible. A simple inspection and cleaning will make all the difference here, so book yours today.