If you’re like most homeowners with a fireplace, once summer arrives, the last thing on your mind is chimney maintenance and repairs. However, summer is the best time to tackle this chore and check it off your to-do list. Here are the top things you should do now to get your chimney winter-ready.
The first thing to do is hire a professional chimney contractor for an inspection. A certified chimney sweep will check your chimney for damage, blockages, and deterioration. They’ll also inspect the flashing and other components to identify problems that could put your home at risk of a fire.
The Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) recommends annual chimney sweeping to remove creosote and debris. Why every year? It’s the national safety standard and considers that even if you don’t use your chimney much during winter, there’s a potential for animals to build nests in the flue or other debris to get in. Moreover, the CSIA says that all masonry fireplaces should be swept at 1/8 inch of sooty buildup, which experts consider to be enough to cause a chimney fire.
Trees and foliage grow full during summer and can hang over your chimney, which creates a fire hazard. If you don’t have a chimney cap, sparks, and embers can escape, catching a tree on fire. Furthermore, branches, leaves, and debris can fall into the flue without a cap, causing a blockage.
Having a chimney cap is essential. This component makes a barrier to stopping debris, small animals, and birds from getting into the chimney, causing problems. If you don’t have a cap, now is the time to install one. They’re inexpensive and can save you hundreds of dollars in damage repairs. Caps also are useful for preventing downdrafts, which can affect your fireplace’s efficiency.
Another crucial fireplace component is the damper because it controls airflow and prevents heat loss when you’re not using your fireplace. Test the damper to ensure it opens and closes easily and that there’s no corrosion or other signs of damage that could impair its performance.
Water will wreak havoc on your chimney, especially if you live in a climate that undergoes a freeze-thaw cycle. Water erodes the mortar joints holding the bricks together and degrades the bricks themselves, and the damage is more severe when freezing temperatures are present. Summer is the ideal time to apply a waterproofing product because the warm weather allows it to cure correctly for the best results.
Summer is the best time to take care of chimney maintenance and repairs because the weather is generally warm and dry, making for longer-lasting and easier repairs. Furthermore, summer is a slow period for most chimney contractors, so it’s easier to schedule repairs, and they often offer discounts to increase business.
Chimney Solutions is the chimney contractor that residents in Alpharetta, GA, and the surrounding areas trust. We’re a full-service provider, including chimney inspections, masonry repair, cap and chase cover installation, chimney liner repair and installation, restoration, rebuilding, and more.
Our technicians are certified by the Chimney Safety Institute of America and members of the National Chimney Sweep Guild. The bottom line is that you can trust our techs to ensure your chimney and fireplace are safe. Book your appointment now by calling 770–874–6504.