The fireplace is easily the most visited spot in the home during winter. Chimneys that handle high temperatures and high volumes of smoke, soot and creosote build-up would definitely require chimney repairs in the long run. Few homeowners consider the consequences of a devastating fire caused by a faulty chimney. Regular chimney repairs and maintenance become imperative to the well-being of your fireplace and your home.
Chimneys are Vulnerable
Chimneys are exposed to the elements and are vulnerable to damage. High temperatures and moisture are among the key factors causing deterioration in the chimney. If you don’t attend to these issues it could become the cause of various fireplace problems in your home, including inefficient heating, leakage of gasses into the home and even house fires.
Damage to the Chimney Cap is Problematic
A chimney cap plays an important role in protecting the fireplace. The main purpose is to keep rain water, debris and small animals out. Any damage to the chimney cap is going to have a detrimental impact on your chimney and fireplace and will shorten its life and should therefore be taken care of immediately.
Damage Due to Wear and Tear
Most damage to a fireplace is the result of frequent use. General wear and tear means that one has to perform regular maintenance on the fireplace and chimney to avoid lasting damage being done. Even a masonry chimney that can last up to a hundred years can see its mortar develop trouble in about twenty five years or so. Once the masonry begins to crack it gets exposed to moisture which compounds the problem.
Inferior Building Quality
Sometimes the building quality of the chimney is poor, leaving them susceptible to damage. A chimney with structural and quality issues can easily result in numerous factors such as dampers that don’t work, incorrect length, defective smoke chambers and so on.
Sudden damage can occur in a chimney as a result of a lightning strike or a a house fire caused by the build up of a soot and creosote.Some of the damage to chimneys is preventable and some not. However there two facts that are quite important when it comes to fireplace chimney maintenance.
- Preventive cleaning can help delay chimney repair and keep your chimney in good condition.
- Chimney upkeep and chimney repair should be taken very seriously.
The latter point is very important on account of the fact that neglecting chimney repair will not only lead to inefficient heating, it will also put your property and the safety of your family at risk. Every year hundreds of millions of dollars worth of damages are reported in homes, due to fireplace and chimney issues. In some cases the damages are also fatal, proving the importance of looking after your chimney.
It therefore is imperative that one gets the fireplace and chimney inspected regularly to find out whether any cleaning or repairs are required. It would be a good idea to do this on a regular basis, rather than waiting for it to become an emergency.
One last thing that one should pay attention to is the fact that you should contract the services of a chimney repair or sweeping company with a good reputation, rather than looking for the cheapest service on the market. This is important to be pointed out because chimney cleaning is not a regulated industry and there are all kinds of people out there who will offer to clean your chimney for a pittance. That is a trap one should avoid at all costs as it inevitably leads to chimney and fireplace issues in the long run.
It is far better to hire the services of well regarded professional who is able to provide testimonials if necessary. This will ensure that not only a good job is done, but also offers you peace of mind. After all, it is a question of the safety of your property and your family members. A professional chimney repair company will possess the expertise, tools and experience to understand the issues surrounding your fireplace and address them in the best possible way, allowing you to once again start using a fireplace that warms your home and comforts you through the long and cold winter.
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