Before you burn…take the time to learn.
About your chimney!
Before you put your feet up this fall, learn 5 reasons why you should have your chimney cleaned, inspected, and protected before you light another fire. By doing this, you can help keep you and your family not only warm, but safe during the upcoming season!
1. Risk of fire
The more fires you build in your fireplace, the more brownish oily liquid made mostly of coal tar called creosote, will build up in your fireplace flue. The flue is the long, narrow channel that carries the smoke up and away from your home. Chimney fires are caused by the build up of Creosote which is highly flammable.
These fires can start explosively and cause alarming sounds loud enough to be detected by neighbors. It’s also common to see flames or dense smoke shooting from the top of the chimney.
How common are chimney fires? According to the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA), the latest statistics say that there are over 22,000 chimney fires annually in the United States.
2. Check for hidden damage
During a regular chimney servicing, a professional cleaner will inspect your entire fireplace, flue, brick seams, damper system, and chimney for cracks or other safety hazards. Early detection is the key to fixing issues that could easily go undetected for years causing you headaches (and many dollars) down the road.
3. Get the most out of your flue
Like any home appliance, the better you maintain it, the longer it will last. By cleaning your chimney each year, you extend the life of the flue by removing the trapped soot and creosote which causes it to deteriorate. By having it cleaned routinely, you shouldn’t have to replace it as frequently.
Removing blockage from your system causes your fires to burn poorly and will heat your home unevenly. It also prevents smoke and harmful gasses from escaping, backing up into your home which is extremely dangerous!
Often, your furniture and walls may start to smell like smoke or become damaged from discoloration from the sticky brown creosote.
5. Chimney Cap
Consider using a chimney cap, even if you only use your fireplace occasionally. If you have not used your fireplace in a long time, animals may have moved in and made your home, their home by building nests that could clog your flue or chimney chamber.
Chimney caps also reduce drafts unwanted that make their way into your home making it colder. They also catch leaves and debris in the seasons when you are not building fires, helping to keep it clean.
Coverage From All Sides
We want you to enjoy your home for as long as you own it, so before you put your home at risk this season, call the chimney professionals in your area to make sure your fall is off to a warm start. If you have questions about chimneys and your homeowner policy, don’t hesitate to send us a message and we’d be happy to talk them over!
Thom Grubbs is an insurance agent and partner at Pentagon Insurance Agency in Elk River, MN. Outside of work, Thom likes to bowl, fish, spend time with his family, and volunteer at his church. Get in touch with Thom and let him make life a little easier by talking over your situation.