We’ve Been Inspecting & Sweeping Chimneys in Centereach Since 2001
Each spring, homeowners in Centereach and the surrounding cities shift into home-improvement mode. They clean gutters, organize their garages, clear out their basements, and start on all those projects they’ve been putting off… But they usually don’t think too much about their fireplace or chimney. Which is unfortunate because springtime is an ideal time to get some maintenance done.
Why springtime? It’s less busy than fall (which means more convenient scheduling), the weather is ideal for repairs, and once done, you’ll be all set to light fires when the first cold days come back around. So, why wait? Give our techs a call today.
Why Annual Chimney Inspections Are Important
One of the more common questions we get is, “How often should my chimney be inspected?”
The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) says, “Chimneys, fireplaces, and vents shall be inspected at least once a year for soundness, freedom from deposits, and correct clearances. Cleaning, maintenance, and repairs shall be done if necessary.”
Which is good to know, but the next question is usually, “Why once per year?”
Well, because a lot can happen in a year. Any minor damages you had will have gotten worse and spread, outdoor debris could have found its way in, and parts of your chimney could need replacing. An inspection will reveal if clogs or damages are present, so that they can be addressed well before kicking off your burning season.
And yes – even if you don’t use your chimney much, annual inspections are still imperative. Animals and birds could have dragged in debris or built nests, and there could be hidden deterioration present that would put you at risk during the few times you do use it.
Chimneys, fireplaces, and vents shall be inspected at least once a year for soundness, freedom from deposits, and correct clearances.
When Does My Chimney Need Sweeping?
The Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) recommends that open masonry fireplaces should be swept when 1/8″ of sooty buildup is present – and sooner if there is any glaze present in the system. And factory-built fireplaces? These should be cleaned when any appreciable buildup occurs (i.e. enough fuel buildup to cause a chimney fire).
Does My Gas Appliance Need Sweeping Too?
Gas fireplaces are known to burn much cleaner than their wood counterparts, and since they won’t produce creosote, they probably don’t need sweepings – or even annual inspections. Right?
Wrong. Many homeowners think this way, but any appliance – no matter the fuel used – needs to be inspected annually and swept regularly. You could still have damage that needs addressing, and it’s still possible for clogs to occur from outside debris flying in or animals trying to nest in your flue.
Also, gas systems can get buildup from the water vapors that exit the home. And high concentrations of water vapor in your chimney can cause major problems.
What About an Oil-Fueled System? Doesn’t My Oil Service Company Handle That?
This is a common misconception. Your oil burner company will do some basic maintenance (like shovel out the base of the chimney or brush out connector pipes), but they typically don’t sweep the chimney. Rather, the byproducts of your oil system products – like unburned carbon and sulfur – will remain behind, causing damage, increasing the likelihood of experiencing clogs, and putting your home at risk.
Finally, you’ll want to be wary of the increased risk of carbon monoxide exposure. This odorless and colorless gas is known for its high toxicity levels, and it can be fatal if proper precautions aren’t taken. Annual service will remove soot deposits and keep the dangers and deterioration associated with it to a minimum.
Our Experts Are Ready for Your Call
We’d love to do all we can to ensure your system is all set and ready for use come fall. Make us your go-to crew for it all, so you can rest easier with every passing year. Call 631-738-0005 or reach out online to schedule.