Our Company Blog

That’s a Funny-looking Bird!

“I don’t need a chimney cap.  Why should I have a cap”.  Well…recently, I got a call about birds in the chimney. The canine friend of the family would not quit barking at the fireplace.  Not birds but a raccoon instead. Oh my.
A chimney cap that is properly-sized and installed can prevent a face like this one sticking out of your chimney.

A chimney cap that is properly-sized and installed can prevent a face like this one sticking out of your chimney.

Chase Covers Offer Protection

Chase Covers Offer Protection

Chase Covers: A Must-Have

Do you see water starting to drip inside your chimney? Are you aware that the damage it brings is can be permanent and could cost you a lot of money? Do you also know that leaks inside your chimney can cause even bigger problems like the growth of molds and deterioration of your chimney walls? The answer may be a chase cover.

This is one of the reasons why our family-owned company, Weststar Chimney Sweeps, is here  – to let you know why you might need to have a chimney chase cover installed in your home. Established in 1999, we pride ourselves with quality chimney services. One thing to feel confident about is that we are licensed by the Chimney Safety Institute of America and have over thirty years of experience in the industry.

Air flow is critical for your chimney to work effectively and safely. A chase cover keeps out things that may cause blockages.

Air flow is critical for your chimney to work effectively and safely. A chase cover keeps out things that may cause blockages.

What are Chase Covers?

Chase covers are a special add-on for additional safety and stability to the overall performance of your chimney. It acts as a barrier and a protector of the delicate parts inside your chimney like that of the chimney flues and flue liner. Basically, they perform the task of preventing anything from going inside the chimney especially water. Blockages or any kind of obstruction from external and environmental causes are also prevented.

Different Metals for Different Tastes

You might be wondering what to get since you’re not quite familiar with the kinds of chase covers out in the market. Actually, there are just two and they are very common for most homes: stainless steel and copper. They can be a bit pricey, but the results are long-term. It can last you many winters. The durability and beauty of these chase covers are definitely worth every penny.

Why Do I Need One at All?

Chase covers are good for three things.  First of all, it saves you a great deal of money. Why? Because it acts as a rooftop to your chimney:

  • Leaks will be prevented. Since water cannot go inside the chimney and form molds and slowly destroy the chimney walls.
  • It can prevent chimney swifts, bird nests and spider webs from entering and blocking your chimney.
  • Lastly, it provides such an aesthetic appeal to the appearance of your home. It gives people the impression of safety as a priority and not something you keep in the sidelines.

If you have a chase cover, the lesser chance you’ll have of unnecessarily damaging your chimney. So what are you waiting for? Chase covers are definitely a must-have for any homeowner out there who wishes for nothing more than an efficient, safe and effective chimney. Pay the price later or upgrade to a chase cover now, let us know if you decide to make this improvement to your home.

 

Stinky Fireplace

Your home is a gathering place for your family and friends to come together as one, but what do you do when there is an odor filling the home that you just can not get rid of?   When you realize it is your chimney making this smell, air fresheners and candles will not be enough.  Although some odors are normal, there are others that indicate a serious problem with your draft. That is when you call in the professionals at Weststar Chimney Sweeps.

If your damper is open when you light the fire and you still have odor, it is time to have your chimney cleaned and inspected.

If your damper is open when you light the fire and you still have odor, it is time to have your chimney cleaned and inspected.

The first thing an inspector will ask is when you had your last chimney sweep.  One of the most common causes for chimney odor is the build-up of creosotes inside the chimney.  The resulting smell is usually worse in the summer due to an increased humidity, when it rains, or when the air conditioner is running inside of the home.  An experienced professional can have the job done quickly without any mess inside of your home.  While this will help relieve most of the odors, it will not eliminate all of them.  The longer creosotes sit in the chimney, the deeper they sink into the construction of the chimney.  One way smells are allowed in you home is the air pressure that forces them inside.  When the air pressure is changed the smell will become more or less apparent.  Old parts or damper and exhaust vent closures can cause this as well as new equipment such as a furnace or water heater, or new windows.

There are ways to fix the negative air brought in by your chimney and if one method does not, you may need to do a combination of things.  First, if your fire damper s not in use, you should keep it closed.  Unless there is a problem with the seal, this should solve you problem.  Also, some people recommend having a glass screen installed so that air cannot pass through into the home.  Lastly, if you have other appliances running in the home change their airflow, as they all will be working against each other.  These tips should not only get rid of the odor, but also keep your name clear of the stinky homeowners list.