5 Reasons to Schedule a Chimney Inspection
If you use a fireplace and chimney in your home, National Chimney Cleaners of Morris County, NJ, and Fairfield County, CT, would like to share five important benefits you’ll receive when you schedule annual chimney inspections.
Learn about trouble early
A thorough inspection by a licensed chimney inspector can find early signs of damage and malfunction that you aren’t aware of. Examples include:
• Cracks and crumbling in the chimney masonry
• Chimney liner damage
• Warped or rusted chimney flashing
• Cracks in the concrete chimney crown
• Ill-fitted or damaged chimney cap
• Damaged or warped fireplace damper
If left alone, these and other problems can turn into major safety and performance issues that are expensive and complicated to fix.
Determine the level of creosote in the flue
If you use a wood-burning fireplace, creosote is always a concern. This substance is formed in your flue when smoke condenses, and it can present as a flakey, puffy, sticky or solid substance. Research shows that most chimney fires each year are started by creosote. The more creosote in your flue, the greater the chance of a devastating fire that could affect not only your chimney but also parts of your home. Excess creosote is addressed by professional chimney sweeps, who use industry-grade tools and equipment to remove the substance. Wood-burning fireplace users should have their chimneys swept once a year.
Determine if the flue contains outside obstructions
Another important reason for regular chimney inspections is to detect outside obstructions that may have gotten into your chimney flue. Common obstructions include:
• Small branches
• Tree fruit
• Nesting materials of small animals
• Small animals that have died in the chimney, unable to escape
When a flue is full of this type of material, smoke may have trouble drafting and CAN backup into your home. Smoke is no good, but even worse is the carbon monoxide that smoke carries. Carbon monoxide is invisible and odorless but is known to be potentially fatal to people and animals when inhaled.
Inspections for specific problems
A “general” chimney inspection will cover what we’ve listed above. Other inspections can cover specific issues:
- Sluggish fires in the fireplace
- Growing white stains on the exterior chimney masonry
- A chimney that leans to one side
- Foul smells coming from the fireplace
- A known or suspected chimney leak
- The house is being sold and a real estate inspection is required
- You’re altering your system, for example, adding a gas insert to a wood-burning masonry fireplace
- A potentially destructive event such as a lighting
strike, earthquake or chimney fire has occurred
Keep your chimney working properly and safely all year long. Has it been more than a year since your last chimney inspection? Are weird things that you don’t understand going on with your chimney or fireplace? A “yes” to either question means it’s time to call National Chimney Cleaners and schedule a proper inspection. We serve all of Morris County, NJ, and Fairfield County, CT. You can reach a fireplace and chimney professional by calling 800-631-6177, or get in touch through our handy contact form.