The Tri State Area's Blog for Fans of Fireplaces and Stoves
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A Brief Look at the History of Chimney Sweeps

In the history of chimney sweeping, there isn’t a chapter that honestly resembles the depiction of the joyful sweep played by Dick Van Dyke in the classic movie Mary Poppins. Sadly, for centuries chimney sweeping was not an enviable or safe profession, though it was always very much needed. Honorable […] Read more

Top 5 Reasons to Consider a Fireplace Insert

One of the biggest changes which has become evident in modern times is an increase in environmental awareness, a movement which has led many homeowners in the Upper Midwest to have fireplace inserts installed. There are several benefits to using fireplace inserts, which is why we recommend these energy-saving appliances […] Read more

Why White Staining on the Chimney Means Trouble

Have you ever noticed white stains on chimneys — perhaps on your own? Many of our chimney service calls from Madison, WI, to Galena, IL, and Dubuque, IA, involve problems caused by moisture; and stains on a chimney are a sign that moisture is permeating the masonry. The residue which […] Read more

Is that a Federally Protected Bird Chirping in your Chimney?

If you ever see bat-like creatures rapidly circling your home, it’s possible you are seeing chimney swifts.  These tiny birds are federally protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, and their favorite place to make a nest is in your chimney.  Well, an old factory smoke stack may be ever […] Read more

Heat your Home the Eco-Friendly Way: With a Wood-Burning Stove

If you have been looking for a good way to help save the environment, look no further than using a wood stove as a heat source in winter. While a wood stove may seem like a throwback to colonial times, today’s wood-burning stoves are actually modern marvels. You can enjoy the […] Read more

5 Answers to the Question: Why Does my Fireplace Stink?

There is much to enjoy about a fireplace, and for some people it’s the fragrance of certain types of logs as they burn.  There are times, however, when the smells coming from a fireplace are unwelcome and downright unpleasant.   When a professional chimney technician cleans and inspects your chimney, most […] Read more

4 Types of Moisture-Related Chimney Damage

Chimney damage caused by moisture is common throughout our service area, from Galena, IL, to Madison, WI, to Dubuque, IA.  One of the most important reasons to get an annual chimney inspection is to determine if there is an unseen problem, such as water damage, and get the issue repaired […] Read more

Things You Need to Know Before Hiring a Chimney Sweep

If you ever get a phone call with an offer to clean your chimney at a huge discount, beware!  There are scam artists in the upper Midwest posing as qualified chimney sweeps.  Their goal is to accept your money as payment for work they have no skills to perform.  Many […] Read more

Chimney Cleaning & Spring Cleaning Go Together

A thorough housecleaning project may be a lot of work, but the results and benefits are worth it.  To get the most enjoyment out of a good spring cleaning, you can’t leave out the fireplace and chimney.  A beautiful fireplace is always the focal point of a room; and it […] Read more

8 Signs that Chimney Repair is Needed

It doesn’t always require the expert eye of a professional chimney sweep to see evidence that a chimney is in need of repair, which is fortunate.  Fireplace safety begins with having a sound fireplace and chimney system that is operating properly.  A damaged chimney is a hazard, and it should […] Read more

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