Whether you have a traditional in-home fireplace or an outdoor landscape feature, it’s important to perform routine maintenance. Chimney fires account for well over 20,000 house fires per year, and almost all of them can be prevented with regular inspections conducted by businesses offering fireplace repair Avon MA.
Anything that blocks smoke from going up and out of your chimney can cause issues, such as allowing toxic fumes such as deadly carbon monoxide into your home. Blockages can occur from animal nesting or other debris, especially in an uncapped chimney. Routine chimney maintenance inspects for and clears dangerous debris.
Creosote is a mixture of tar and soot that is a byproduct of burning wood. It is flammable and builds up on your chimney lining with each use. At some point, build-up reaches a hazardous level and can start a chimney fire. Routine safety checks and cleaning will keep creosote buildup from reaching hazardous levels.
It is nearly impossible for you to identify structural issues on your own due to the inaccessibility of most chimney areas, so engaging a professional to inspect your chimney’s flashing, crown and liner is good practice. Cracks in the flashing can result in significant water damage to the ceiling in your attic, for example. Water entering the crown of your chimney and then freezing and expanding can damage the overall masonry structure, causing leaning, crumbling or overall collapse. Since it’s subjected to heat with each use, the lining can crack over time.
As knowledge of chimney and fire science evolves, national and local safety codes change, and older chimneys may need updates to be insured or properly zoned.
Standard chimney inspections typically cost $100-$250 dollars. Compared to the cost of repairing an extensively damaged chimney or rebuilding after a house fire, making fireplace and chimney inspection an annual routine is the smarter option.