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5 Summertime Chimney Myths

Did you know there are several myths about fireplaces and chimneys that have been passed from homeowner to homeowner? We’ve heard many of these tales over our years of service. Here are five misconceptions about chimney ownership and summer maintenance that you should know:

Myth #1 - I didn’t use my fireplace this winter so I don’t need a cleaning and inspection this summer.

Even if you haven’t used your fireplace, it’s still important to have your chimney system inspected and serviced before you burn another fire. Cracks could have formed in the masonry, causing structural damage; moisture inside your chimney system could have created a number of issues; and animal nests could be inside your flue, creating dangerous blockages.

Myth #2 - Now that my fireplace is closed up for the season, I can forget about it until next fall.

While your fireplace might be taking a much-needed break after a busy burning season, the critters in your yard are very busy and on the prowl, looking for a place to shelter. A chimney without a cap is like hanging a “vacancy” sign to birds, racoons, and even squirrels to hunker down and build nests inside your chimney.

Myth #3 - Cleaning my chimney at the end of winter prevents bad smells.

The wet, humid air of summer that comes down your chimney brings with it odors from excess moisture, residual creosote trapped in porous bricks and mortar, animal remains, or outside debris. While a chimney cleaning is the best method to remove odor-causing debris and soot, there are other processes to help prevent that campy fireplace smell, such as waterproofing, replacing your damper, or installing a glass door.

Myth #4 - Leaving the damper open cools my home.

An open damper actually delivers hot outside air straight down your chimney and into your room, forcing your air conditioner to work harder to compensate for the constantly flow of warm air. This in turn leaves you with an overworked cooling system and higher utility bills.

Pro Tip: Even closed dampers can create drafts. If your damper has been damaged by water, animals, or has lost its seal due to age, it may be time for a replacement. Contact our CCP-certified chimney specialists to learn the benefits of a new damper.

Myth #5 - Metal liners don’t require cleaning.

While metal liners require less maintenance, they still need periodic cleaning. Creosote and other corrosive combustion gases can accumulate and cause blockages, regardless of its composition. Also, many liner warranties can be voided without annual chimney inspections.

Chimney Cleaning, Inspection, Service, and Repair in NH and MA

Whether we’re performing an inspection, sweeping a chimney, or installing a cap, the CCP-certified chimney experts can make your chimney system safe and enjoyable to use. Let us help you with your chimney needs. Contact us today.

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