What Can Happen If You Procrastinate On a Chimney Cleaning?
It is probably true that cleaning the chimney is not on your to do list. That’s understandable. After all, you may think about the chimney on those occasions when it’s cold outside and a fire in the fireplace would make your home feel warm and cozy.
You probably would never consider that combustible creosote is building up on the interior walls of the chimney each time you burn a fire in the fireplace. And you probably aren’t aware that such a build up can be a threat to your home and your family’s health.
Things that can occur if you don’t clean your chimney can include:
- A fire in the chimney
- Exposure to carbon monoxide
- An illness for you or your family
- Build up of mold in the chimney
Such dangers could be present, but there are no warning signs to alert you to the problem. However, according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), a national advocacy group that touts fire safety based in Quincy, Massachusetts, you should have your chimney inspected at least once a year. This is necessary to assure that the chimney functions properly and safely.
Despite the warning, the NFPA does not suggest a yearly cleaning because the need depends on how often you use your fireplace and some families use it less than others. It’s based on the creosote buildup, which can be determined with an inspection.
Still, there are signs of a potential problem if you are observant. For example, you could smell a foul odor coming from the chimney area especially during the summer and you may observe dust or dark residue in the fireplace.
Whether a cleaning is necessary is based on an inspection by a chimney professional, also known as a chimney sweep.
Chimney Specialists can perform the inspection and chimney cleaning if we determine that one is necessary. We recommend an inspection yearly.
If your chimney doesn’t have a cap, then we advise that you get it cleaned before its first use at the start of winter and that you acquire a chimney cap to prevent debris, critters, and moisture from getting in. You should be aware that animals are attracted to chimneys and birds and squirrels often build their nests in the structure as cover against the cold weather.
The Best Time For A Chimney Cleaning
We suggest that a chimney be cleaned after the winter months. That’s a good time because most families use their fireplace in the winter.
When we inspect a chimney to determine if it needs cleaning, we determine if the soot residue is at or beyond 1/16th of an inch thick. The residue commonly looks glazed and sooty and it is apparent that the fireplace has been used frequently since the last cleaning.
Selecting A Reliable Chimney Sweeper
Of course, you want to assure that whoever you select does the task correctly and in a reasonable amount of time.
Chimney Specialists have been inspecting and cleaning chimneys nearly 45 years. Our staff knows what to look for to determine if a cleaning is necessary and our employees have been specifically trained to perform the cleaning right.
We’d be happy to schedule your chimney inspection each year, remind you that it’s time for an inspection and possible cleaning and our representative will come to your home at a time that is most convenient for you.
For more information, contact us at (608) 929-4887 or visit our website.