The crackling of a fire in your fireplace is a mark of the coziness of winter. However, the chimney can pose a fire risk if not properly maintained. There is a perfect time of year to have chimney services done at your home.
Most people don’t think about maintaining their chimneys. However, soot, debris and creosote can stick to the walls of the chimney. Over time, they continue to accumulate posing a fire risk. Not to mention small animals such as squirrels, raccoons and birds can build homes or damage the flue preventing smoke from venting outside.
The best time to have the chimney inspected is after the fireplace is no longer in use and before you use it again. By having it inspected during the spring and summer months, you allow the inspector to really see what is inside the chimney. The material isn’t warm or hot and can be cleaned away. To safely maintain the chimney, it is best to have it serviced on an annual basis especially if you regularly use it. If the fireplace is irregularly used, it is best to have it inspected prior to use as there could be damage.
The inspector should check for animals, creosote issues and debris in the chimney, flue and fireplace on an annual basis. A professional has the experience to know how to clean the chimney and what to look for. They can see any cracks or damage that needs repair before use. By doing the service during the off-season, you have the time to repair, clean and replace the various parts of the system before you get ready for a snuggly night in.
Don’t neglect chimney services because you feel you are too busy. This essential maintenance for your home can help prevent fires and keep the fireplace safe to use. Waiting until the neighbor’s house burns down or your own may be too late.