If your home has a chimney, properly cleaning it is essential to the safety and well-being of your family and structure. A chimney sweep removes blockages, soot, and other accumulations from all the components, which helps prevent any dangerous situations. But how can you tell if you’re due for a chimney cleaning? The experts at Chimney Pro, based in Fort Payne, AL, say you should schedule an appointment when one of the following applies to you.
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A crackling fire is a wonderful way to keep your home warm and cozy when it’s chilly outside — but only as long as the chimney and fireplace are clean and well-maintained. While a chimney may not seem like it needs much maintenance, dirt and particulate buildup can present some serious problems. Below are just a few of the dangers of skipping annual chimney cleanings.
3 Dangers of a Dirty Chimney
- Chimney Fires: As ash, vapor, unburned wood particles, and other by-products of the fire go up the chimney, they rapidly cool and stick to the sides of the chimney. When the resulting residue hardens, creosote is formed, which is a dangerous substance that can be highly flammable. If the deposits are thick enough, they can combust if the chimney temperatures climb, causing catastrophic fires that essentially burn your home from the inside out.
- Carbon Monoxide: If the chimney is dirty enough, gas and debris may not be able to escape, causing carbon monoxide to seep into the home. This tasteless, odorless gas is extremely dangerous and potentially lethal. Those exposed to carbon monoxide poisoning may suffer from confusion, dizziness, nausea, and, eventually, loss of consciousness.
- Toxic Material Exposure: Creosote and soot can come back down the chimney in small particles, causing serious health problems for those who come into contact with it. Some common symptoms include respiratory problems, rashes, and eye irritation, but it can also cause seizures and even cancer in some individuals.
The chimney cleaning professionals at Chimney Pro have the training and expertise needed to keep you and your family safe throughout the winter. With locations in Chattanooga, TN, Fort Payne, AL, and Rome and Dalton, GA, they provide high-quality services to homeowners throughout the region. To schedule your chimney cleaning, use our contact form or call us at (256) 845-9814 today.
For many people, approaching cooler months conjures up images of cozy gatherings around a warm fireplace. However, if you haven’t done any chimney cleaning since last year, or you’re trying your fireplace out for the first time, it may not be safe to use.
The experts at Chimney Pro understand the dangers of operating a dirty chimney. Below, we will highlight the potential hazards that can cause damage to your home and explain why it’s important to have your chimney cleaned by a professional:
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We all know the importance of removing lint from the lint trap inside the dryer. Most wouldn’t think of running a load of clothes without performing this task. The buildup of lint in this area is just a small portion of the lint that is produced. The dryer vent is the route in which lint, air and gases travel and is removed from the home. Lint can build up and clog these vents creating a fire hazard.
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For centuries folks have been trying to find ways to take care of creosote buildup in their flue and passing it down through the generations. Old days it was common to throw a live chicken down the flue to remove the soot. Progression took us to burning salt and aluminum cans. Now, not capping the chimney because the birds and rain keep it clean. The scariest, “I set mine on fire intentionally every year and burn it all out”. Many lives and homes have been lost because we didn’t know what worked. Today, we have codes, standards, and technology that gives professionally trained chimney sweeps the knowledge that wasn’t available to our predecessors.
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Chimneys are usually all but forgotten until its winter and you can not wait to build that first fire, but sometimes a problem arises that demands your immediate attention. Water! Chimneys have the most exposed brick/rock on your home, so the severe weather with freeze/thaw cycles and rain takes it’s toll. Brick and mortar joints are porous, so when it rains the water is absorbed. The fact that brick are porous is what makes them stick together when laid called a hydraulic bond. So with all this being said your masonry chimney is essentially a big sponge or wick on the exterior of your home or above your roof line. Trying to diagnose exactly where the water is penetrating can be tricky. Many times it’s assumed water is coming through the flashing at the base of a chimney or down the flue, but in most cases it is caused by years of exposure to the elements. This exposure can wreak havoc on a masonry chimney’s structure.
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