Prevent chimney fires with annual cleanings

By: Kim Cox

Yep. Love it or hate it – fall has arrived here in Damascus, Maryland.

And fall ushers in the cool, crisp evenings that trigger the thought of relaxing in front of a nice cozy fire in your fireplace.

But before you even think about starting your first fire, there’s one crucial task you should do to prevent a chimney fire, which could turn deadly.

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If you have a working fireplace, pellet stove, or wood stove, then this is for you.

We recommend getting your chimney inspected and cleaned BEFORE you light the first fire of the year!

Why?

Chimney Fire

Chimney Fire

Several reasons.

  • To make sure there are no dead animals or birds (um… they can cause quite a stink)
  • To remove soot and creosote deposits which accumulate, combust, and can cause hard-to-detect fires which turn into full-blown house fires
  • To make sure there are no cracks in the flue which can allow poisonous gases to escape into your home
  • To check for broken bricks or cracks in the mortar, which can be dangerous and reduce the efficiency of your woodstove
  • To make sure you’re not one of the 27,200 people who suffered 126 million dollars in structure damage because of chimney/fireplace problems (from 2008 USCPCS report)

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How to inspect and clean your chimney

Hiring a professional chimney sweep is always our recommended option. But if you’re a DIYer, and don’t mind heights, you can clean your own chimney from the roof with a wire chimney cleaning brush, available at your local home center. (Of course if you clean it yourself – please take all safety precautions! Ladders and roofs can be dangerous).

Mo matter who does it – PLEASE inspect and clean your chimney at least once every year. Chimney fires are almost always preventable with the right care.
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Call us at 301-368-3551 with your questions or for more information

On Top Home Improvements
10818 Avonlea Ridge Place
Damascus, MD 20872
301-368-3551
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