How often should I have my chimney swept?
The national safety standard is to have your chimney inspected yearly for soundness, freedom of deposits, and correct clearances. This takes into account that even if you don't use your chimney often, there may be debris or animal nests in your flue. Getting your chimney inspected yearly and in the off season is a good idea so it is ready to go when the weather gets cooler.
What should I know about Firewood?
Make sure you are buying seasoned wood for your fireplace. Also, hard woods such as Oak, Maple, or Cherry are ideal for burning because they burn slower and cleaner. Unseasoned wood or "soft wood" can lead to creosote buildup, smoking problems, and sometimes chimney fires. Try calling your local farms or tree surgeon companies and ask if they have seasoned wood for sale. You want wood that has a moisture content of 20% or less. *Rule of thumb is...think a year ahead when buying wood to ensure you will have enough and that it is properly seasoned*
Why does my chimney smell?
When it is cool in your house and the temperatures rise outside, the warmer air will flow down the chimney into your home. Along with the air comes a smell put off by creosote build up in the chimney. The best ways to avoid this odor is to have your chimney swept and make sure the damper is closed to limit air flow. Also, cleaning the walls of your firebox and sprinkling some baking soda on the bottom of the firebox can help eliminate odors.
What is a Damper?
A fireplace damper is usually located in the throat of a masonry chimney just above the firebox. It is a device that is meant to seal your fireplace shut when it is not in use. This is necessary so that heated air from your home will not escape up the chimney when the fireplace is not being used.
How do I prepare for a Chimney Cleaning at my house?
There is no need to cover furniture or rugs before we get there. We take all the precautions to keep your valuables safe and clean. Our vacuums have HEPA filters to keep the air clean in your home. Please be home or make sure we can have access to the inside of your home the day of your appointment. It is also a good idea to make sure pets are in a contained space, so they are not frightened by the vacuum. Please let us know if you have a roof that is hard to get to or very steep, so we can bring the appropriate equipment to get to your chimney.
I just moved to a new home. Should I have my fireplace/gas fireplace checked?
Yes! It is always a good idea to have an inspection done to insure the safety of your fireplace, chimney, or gas fireplace insert.
When should I have my gas logs serviced?
Every other year is a good estimation of when you should have your gas fireplace serviced. You will need new sand (natural gas), or vermiculite ( LP) put in and possibly your embers replaced. We will check the gas valves to make sure there is no gas leaks, or vent blockages.