There is nothing as relaxing as sitting in your house in front of a burning wood fire during the cold season. To ensure your safety and health as you use the fireplace, your chimney needs regular maintenance.
You may ask why sweep your chimney even if you have not used it many times. It is advisable to clean and maintain the chimney to ensure it is safe to use.
There are several good reasons to clean your chimney but here are a few of them…
Preventing Chimney Fire
A chimney fire can be spectacular with a loud popping sound, hot odour, and dense smoke. In some case they burn slow and may not even be visible. However, they still produce high temperatures that can easily seep through your house walls and ignite flammable items in the house.
Chimney fire flames can spread to the roof very fast causing severe damages or even destruction to your home.
Want to know how to prevent this?
This nightmare can be avoided by checking your chimney regularly and cleaning it especially before the cold season arrives. Dirty chimneys are the primary cause of chimney fire so by cleaning, you can avoid the risk and its associated costs. The chimney gets clogged with creosote, a tar-like natural substance which s a by-product of burning wood.
When it builds over time, it will leave a highly combustible glazing inside the chimney. Just a little of this can start a fire. When air supply is restricted to the chimney, your wood burning process will create more creosote, however, cleaning the chimney before use will prevent all these.
Protect Your Health
Fact: If you aren’t cleaning your chimney properly, you’re putting your health at risk.
Carbon monoxide poisoning is common in cases where the chimney is not cleaned. If you still need a reason why sweep your chimney, your health is the reason. When you breathe the fumes from burning wood or solid fuels can compromise your oxygen supply to the brain and body resulting in death. At low levels, it causes nausea, dizziness, headaches and fainting and is not something to ignore.
Each year thousands die due to carbon monoxide poisoning caused by blocked chimneys. Ensure you sweep the chimney before use to make it work efficiently for the sake of your health.
Preventing Smoke Damage
Smoke damage isn’t a joke, so you shouldn’t treat it like one.
If you don’t clean your chimney regularly, soot will accumulate around the flue causing an inability to draw smoke upwards. The smoke will then be directed to your room leaving black soot on the walls, furniture, and carpeting. It causes permanent staining around the chimney in some cases. Cutting corners with chimney maintenance is to play with fire literally.
These risks can be prevented fully by regularly cleaning the chimney. A professional can do it annually while inspecting for damages as you prepare for winter.
Deterioration Of Masonry
The residue from burning fuel can cause masonry to quickly wear out forcing you to undertake expensive repairs. When soot mixes with water, it produces acids that weaken the mortar and chimney liners.
It is a slow process but when left to continue all through spring and summer will significantly affect the integrity of your home. However, if you clean the chimney after the heating season, you reduce the chances of early repair to your home.
Starting to make sense yet?
Damage To Liner
Let’s be honest. The thought of sweeping your chimney sounds like a job you just don’t want to do.
But it’s crucial that you do.
Spring clean of the chimney will benefit your liners very much. Sweeping the residue collected on the liner is easy in its original state, however, if left for long, it will absorb moisture and becomes tar-like and begin sliding down the flue.
When you fire the chimney next or if there is a spell of dry weather with some warmth, the moisture in this mixture will evaporate leaving a smooth, solid with a shiny surface and no gaps glued to the flue sides. This flammable substance will be so difficult to remove in this state. It will gradually reduce the flue diameter with every process causing, even more risk to your health and the house.
This is why you should sweep your chimney a soon as the heating season has passed before things get out of hand.
It’s beneficial to prepare for the next season in time by sweeping your chimney right after use. It is better to clean in spring instead of waiting for autumn when everyone is booking for the professional cleaning services in preparation for the cold season.
It is advisable to sweep your chimney once a year to protect your house from damage and keep yourself healthy and free from risks like carbon monoxide poisoning.
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