How Do I Take Care of My Chimney?
By Doug Hetsch
June 17, 2016
You just bought a new home with a gorgeous fireplace, but you have never lived in a house with a chimney and fireplace system before and are not sure exactly what you need to do to keep everything running safely and smoothly. Our staff at All American Chimney Service enjoys educating new homeowners about how to maintain their chimneys, and we would like to share with you a few important tips you should remember to take the best care of your chimney.
Most importantly, schedule an annual professional chimney sweeping and inspection.
National fire safety organizations like the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recommend that homeowners have their chimneys professionally cleaned and inspected every year before lighting the first fire of the season. You can trust our certified and experienced chimney sweeps to ensure that your chimney works efficiently and safely.
Be careful of crawling vines growing up the chimney.
If you have purchased a home that was built before 1930, you will want to check to see if the chimney is covered with British ivy or another crawling vine. Older homes were built before Portland cement was added to masonry mortar, which means it is not as strong as the mortar of today. Over the years, there is likely to be erosion damage, and these plants tend to aggressively grow into any cracks and gaps in masonry work. The ivy could be so attached to the chimney that you could pull the chimney structure down along with the plants. All American Chimney Service has years of experience in inspecting older chimneys and can safely remove these plants to make necessary repairs.
Have a good quality chimney cap professionally installed on top of the chimney.
According to the CSIA, a chimney cap is one of the best and least expensive ways to protect your chimney fromwater penetration. Water can cause a lot of costly and unsafe damage to masonry chimneys, so keeping water out of the chimney is another one of the most important maintenance responsibilities you will have. All American Chimney Service can tell you about other ways we can prevent water leaks in your chimney. We specialize in protecting chimneys from water penetration.
Want to learn more tips on taking the best care of your chimney? Contact us at All American Chimney Service for maintenance tips and for all of your chimney maintenance, repair, and installation services.