One of the biggest reasons why the CSIA stresses the importance of annual inspections is so sweeps can evaluate whether or not you have excessive creosote buildup inside of your chimney. Should dangerous amounts be present, having it removed will allow for a safer and better functioning fireplace, sure to bring countless nights of peace, warmth, and comfort. Learn more about creosote below!
What Is Creosote?
Creosote is a substance that builds up in your chimney as you light fires in the fireplace. It comes in a few different forms, ranging from soft and flaky to sticky and tar-like to hard and glazed. So no matter the texture, creosote is very damaging and dangerous to have in your chimney, which is why regular removal is important.
The reason why creosote triggers so many problems is due to its highly flammable nature. The more you have, the higher your risk is for a chimney fire, which causes significant structural damage and makes your fireplace unsafe and unsuitable for regular use.
Unfortunately, not all chimney fires are created equal. It may seem like they all would be loud and obvious, but many are quite quiet, meaning homeowners are unaware their system has undergone excessive damage. This means that they’ll continue to light fires and use their chimney, which could pose serious threats to their home and family in the form of gas leaks and house fires.
When Is Deglazing Necessary?
Now, for those who invest in regular inspections and maintenance, any creosote buildup should not be especially challenging to remove. Yet, fireplaces that have faced longer periods of neglect or misuse may find themselves with glazed creosote throughout, which is more challenging to take on.
Glazed creosote needs to be approached differently than your standard creosote buildup, as it is thicker, more solid, and essentially baked onto your chimney walls. Attempting removal without the proper tools and equipment will not get the job done, and it will likely cause damage to your chimney interior in the process.
If your find yourself face-to-face with glazed creosote, the best option would be to invest in help from a CSIA certified sweep, like the crew at Weststar Chimney Sweeps. This is the only way to avoid bigger issues down the line, and it will get the job taken care of in the most efficient manner possible. Investing in professional help will always yield the quickest and least expensive results overall, so be sure to contact us right away if you suspect trouble.
Need An Inspection?
Not sure where your chimney stands in terms of creosote accumulation? Sounds like it’s time for an inspection. Our professional and experienced crew can look things over for you, then assess whether or not further repair or sweeping services are necessary. Together, we can find the best solutions for your needs, so give us a call soon!
Christmas is almost here, and excitement is building more and more with every passing day. We know there are still lots of things to do to prepare for Santa’s arrival. Bake some cookies, buy some carrots for the reindeer, and don’t forget to make sure your chimney is clean and ready! At Weststar Chimney Sweeps, we can help ensure your fireplace is as safe as possible for Santa’s arrival. Give us a call, so we can help you today.
Invest In Annual Inspections & Sweepings
If it’s been awhile since you invested in an inspection, now is the time to call us in. The CSIA recommends scheduling at least one inspection per year, and there’s no better time than right before the holidays kick off! Give our certified technicians a hollar right away. We’ll make sure you’re good to go this holiday season!
Chimneys that are used without being inspected face some extra risks. For one thing, creosote needs to be cleaned out from time to time. If it accumulates too much, your chances of a chimney fire increase significantly. Chimney fires damage your structure and leave behind gaps and openings for stray flames to escape. This could eventually lead to toxins entering your home or a house fire. Stay safe – get an inspection of the books today!
Our sweeps will also check for any clogs or blockages. It’s not unusual for animals to set up camp when your fireplace isn’t in use. If any critters, nesting materials, twigs, or other debris is clogging things up, air will not circulate properly through your system. Consequently, you risk exposure to carbon monoxide (as well as smoke and other toxins). Carbon monoxide can lead to serious illness, and it is basically impossible to notice without a detector. Don’t take any chances! Have our staff check things over.
Steps You Can Take
If you’re wondering which steps you, as a homeowner, can take to maintain a safer fireplace, check out these tips!
First of all, make sure that only properly seasoned wood gets burned in your fireplace. That means no trash, paper plates, napkins, wrapping paper, or anything similar. You’ll also want to avoid fresh wood, as it contains a lot of moisture. Fresh wood uses up a lot of energy to burn through, leaving you with more smoke and less heat. It also encourages the accumulation of creosote which, as noted above, isn’t good at all! Make things easier and safer by using seasoned wood from the start.
It’s also important to install smoke and carbon monoxide detectors throughout your home. These will be your first warning signs of trouble, and they have saved countless lives over the decades. Along with this, practice fire safety in your home, and keep young children informed on how to stay protected. Plan two escape routes from each room in your home and practice fire drills throughout the year, so that everyone is prepared, no matter what.
At Weststar Chimney Sweeps, we want all of our customers to have a safe and happy holiday season. Work with us, and you won’t regret it!