Firebox Repair By CSIA Certified Chimney Sweeps
The firebox is the part of the chimney in which the fire actually burns. Fireboxes are constructed using refractory mortar and firebricks designed to withstand the extreme heat that the firebox must handle regularly. Even though these materials are fire-resistant, the firebox can still deteriorate over time just like the rest of the chimney. Certified chimney sweeps, like our fully trained and insured technicians, should inspect your firebox each year, along with the rest of the fireplace and chimney. Any cracked or damaged brick or mortar in the fire box should be repaired.
Mercer County Chimney Services techs are certified by the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) and members of the National Chimney Sweep Guild (NCSG), so you can trust the expertise of our chimney sweeps to find any problems in your chimney and fix them, including a damaged firebox.
It is important to watch out for any deterioration in the firebox, if it looks cracked, worn, or rough, for it will begin to wear down over time. This gradual wear and tear is caused by the repeated heating and cooling of the firebox. Eventually, the refractory mortar will crack or fall out, leaving gaps in the firebox. When there are gaps in a firebox, there is a possibility of combustible materials surrounding the fireplace to be exposed to stray embers and sparks that could cause fires. There is also a possibility of toxic gasses escaping into the house through the cracks of the firebox instead of venting properly up the flue.
Firebox Rebuild & Waterproofing
If cracks in the firebox are found before the problem becomes too severe, it can be fixed by simply reapplying mortar and the cracks can be sealed. If there is too much damage to the bricks, though, an entire firebox rebuild might be necessary. With a repaired or rebuilt firebox, the owner can have peace of mind to safely burn their fires without fear of their family’s safety.
Another threat to the health of your firebox is water. If water has leaked into the chimney, seeping into the masonry of the firebox, your firebox could become rusty or show signs of erosion. Mortar can chip away and bricks can crack, erode or separate. One way to tell if the condition of your firebox has become compromised is to take a screwdriver or other pointed tool and scrape the mortar joints inside of the fireplace. If the mortar crumbles or falls away easily, your firebox is in need of repairs. Old mortar can be replaced with new mortar in a process called “tuckpointing” to reinforce the joints of the masonry.
Your firebox might be fitted with a pre-fabricated metal fireplace insert. In this case, the panels of the in the insert may need to be replaced after years of usage. An old, damaged insert might even need to be replaced. There are many different styles of fireplace inserts that can be installed into a chimney system. It is up to you to choose the look of your new insert to breathe some fresh life into your fireplace. Wood or gas stoves are another possible option to install within your firebox. Stoves will protect your firebox from the heat of an open fire. All of these are good choices to insure the health of your firebox.
If you have a chimney that is in need of firebox repair, or you need a chimney sweep, call us at 609-802-5288. Mercer County Chimney Services operate in cities across the county, including Chesterfield NJ, Allentown NJ, Bordentown NJ and Princeton NJ.