Dangers of Using Your Fireplace Without an Inspection

It is dangerous to use your fireplace without first getting a chimney inspection, especially for that first time in winter. Every year there are thousands of home fires that occur as a direct result of lighting a fire when there is an unseen blockage in the chimney. Several common dangers could be lurking. When you schedule a chimney inspection, you get the benefit of learning the condition of your chimney and whether repairs are needed before using your solid fuel appliance. To understand more about the dangers of using your fireplace without a chimney inspection, read on.

signs of chimney fire, marietta gaChimney Fires

A chimney fire is a fire inside the chimney flue that occurs when flammable materials in the flue combust. Chimney fires typically cause structural damage, which often means the chimney flue is no longer safe. (Below, learn more about the dangers associated with a damaged flue liner.) If chimney fires burn too long, a tragic result is that the intense flames spread into the home and cause terrible
life-threatening destruction.

During a basic or Level 1 chimney inspection, a trained chimney sweep conducts a visual check of all parts of the chimney and fireplace that are readily accessible. Chimney blockage is among the issues chimney sweeps check.


The most common combustible material that causes chimney obstructions is creosote. A tar-like substance, creosote is deposited in the chimney flue every time there is a wood-fueled fire. Although creosote buildup is unavoidable, burning the correct kind of firewood minimizes the volume of creosote deposits. Being highly combustible, creosote that is layered inside a chimney flue increases the risk that an ember will ignite a chimney fire fueled by creosote.

chimney flue video inspection, roswell gaDamaged Chimney Flue

The chimney flue protects a home & occupants through important functions.

First, the flue keeps combustible parts of the home from being exposed to extreme heat. When combustible materials are repeatedly exposed to high temperatures, a process called pyrolysis occurs. Pyrolysis means the temperature at which materials ignite becomes significantly lowered.

Secondly, the flue is the pathway for toxic combustion fumes to exit the home. Those dangerous fumes include carbon monoxide (CO). Known as the Silent Killer, carbon monoxide is odorless, invisible, tasteless, and symptomless.

If there is even the smallest crack in a chimney flue, the dangers of a house fire and carbon monoxide poisoning are both very real threats. During a Level 2 chimney inspection, a special camera is used to check the condition of the chimney flue from top to bottom. If the flue is damaged, the chimney technician will inform the owners of the home or business that chimney flue repair or replacement is needed.

Call Experts for Chimney Inspections

The CSIA-certified chimney sweeps at Chimney Solutions of Alpharetta, GA, have gained the trust of homeowners and business owners throughout the Atlanta GA area. Contact Chimney Solutions for your annual chimney inspection and avoid the dangers associated with using the fireplace when it vents through a dirty, blocked chimney. We consistently provide reliable services and help homeowners enjoy greater peace of mind. Give us a call today at
(770) 709-6648.

Chimney Solutions
1155 McFarland 400 Drive AlpharettaGA30004 USA 
 • (770) 255-1300
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