Fireplace Maintenance Tips to Prevent Costly Repairs
Fireplace and chimney repairs can be costly, but they don’t have to be. Keeping up with routine maintenance and service can help save you a ton of money in the long run. We’ve put together a few tips and tricks for avoiding major repairs and stopping serious damage before it gets out of hand.
Keep Your Eye on the “Little Things”
Paying close attention to the smaller aspects of your chimney and fireplace can help you spot potential issues before they become a bigger problem.
Take a quick look at the masonry of your firebox each time you light a fire to spot any cracks or loose mortar joints that could spread or escalate from the heat on your fireplace.
Your damper is a very important component of a safe and efficient chimney. Ensure that you know how to properly operate your damper as well as spot signs of a malfunctioning or missing damper.
Ensuring that your flue is functioning and in good shape is crucial for safety. Whether you have a stainless steel or tile chimney liner, it’s important to watch for signs of damage or malfunction in your chimney’s flue liner.
The Bigger Chimney Picture
The outside portion is what most people think of when they consider chimney damage. The outdoor components of your chimney are exposed to weather, moisture, animals, and debris which over time can create natural wear and tear on the chimney.
Annual Chimney Inspections
You may not have the knowledge or the tools to safely inspect the chimney yourself. It’s recommended that you have your chimney inspected by a professional annually. With an annual inspection, a certified chimney sweep can locate any current or potential points of damage and recommend the best course of action to correct these issues.
Chimney Sweeps and Cleanings
If you have a wood-burning fireplace, the byproducts of your fire will create soot and creosote that will build up in your chimney. Creosote is a sticky tar-like substance that hardens over time and coats your flue. This substance is extremely flammable and poses a serious risk of chimney fires. Have your chimney cleaned regularly by a certified chimney sweep to improve safety and efficiency.
Repair or Replace Broken Components
Every component of your chimney plays an important role. Your chimneys cap, flashing, and brick all need to be in tip top shape in order for your chimney to function properly. During an inspection, your chimney technician will check each of these components and assess the need for any repairs or replacements.
A Few Last Minute Safety Tips
Fireplaces are a wonderful source of heat and make the perfect focal point in any room, but it’s important to remember they can still pose certain risks. Safety should always be a top priority when starting each cozy fire. Even with proper maintenance, it’s important to adopt a few everyday practices for fireplace safety
For the safest fireplace experience follow these other fireplace tips:
- Use only well-seasoned hardwoods in your fireplace
- Consider investing in a quality fireplace screen or door
- Install smoke and carbon monoxide alarms and remember to replace the batteries regularly
- Keep an eye on children and pets when the fireplace is in use
- Keep flammable items away from the fireplace opening
Call Mercer County Chimney for your Next Chimney Service
Mercer County Chimney can spot and solve damage before it becomes a major costly repair or rebuild. If it’s time for your annual chimney service, call us today at 609-802-5288 or fill out our simple contact form.