Residential Chimney Inspections: Checking the Chimney
If our experiences in chimney inspections have shown us anything, it’s that every chimney – no matter how well built – need regular inspections to ensure they’re providing a comfortable, safe heating experience for the homeowner, guest or renter. Fresh Sweeps is ready to conduct a thorough chimney system inspection that identifies problems and finds solutions.
Discover what a Fresh Sweeps chimney inspection looks like below:
Level 1 Inspection to N.F.P.A.* Standards
For homeowners experiencing no visible problems with the chimney system, this inspection confirms proper operation. All easily accessible parts of the chimney system are inspected and evaluated visually by a trained, local Fresh Sweeps technician.
Level 2 Inspection To N.F.P.A. Standards
If problems are observed – drafts, smoke entering the home, etc. – or if the property is being bought or sold, this more comprehensive inspection is recommended. We also strongly encourage a Level 2 chimney inspection whenever the chimney system has been damaged, modified, or a change is anticipated. The Level 2 inspection is a more detailed process, including getting onto the roof (where necessary/possible) and a full, live flue video scan.
*National Fire Protection Association
A Fresh Sweeps inspection is designed to spot obstacles to safe, comfort-providing heat from a wood, pellet, gas, or oil-fueled heating appliance. From the fire source or “firebox” all the way to the roof vent, we’ll make sure your entire chimney system is free of damages and obstructions so that it can operate efficiently.
We also inspect the damper that sits above the combustion chamber, a feature that helps control airflow and exhaust. Our goal is to make sure that any build-up of carbon monoxide is being safely eliminated by a well-built and maintained system. At any and all points, a reduction in this all-important airflow can make combustion of the fuel source difficult and increase dangers.
Here’s an example of what your technician will look for during an inspection. A fireplace has what’s termed a “smoke shelf” part way up the chimney to stop smoke from traveling back down to the room. This is one of many places in the chimney system where material, even brought in by raccoons and other animals, can create hazards. Your Fresh Sweeps technician always makes sure to check the smoke shelf and numerous other features of your home’s heating appliance.
Another thing we’ll always check for in any stove, fireplace, or heating appliance is a buildup of creosote, soot, and other debris. Creosote, a black or dark brown tar, is residue of the wood burning process.
It can stick to the bricks, pipes, liners, and rooftop cap. It’s a flammable substance that can build-up quickly – in less than a year if a fireplace is used regularly. Not to worry, though, because your Fresh Sweeps technician will check for creosote buildup during your chimney inspection.
So don’t let your home’s chimney and fireplace go a day longer without a proper annual inspection. Fresh Sweeps will give your system a thorough examination to ensure its operating efficiently and is safe for you, your home, and your family.
The Risk of Unswept, Uninspected Fireplaces
Between 2012 and 2014, there were an estimated 66,800 structure fires in the U.S. from fireplaces, chimneys, and chimney connectors. (Source)
Don’t put your home and family at risk. Our annual chimney inspection – whether Level 1 or Level 2 – is conducted by a trained, certified, and insured Fresh Sweeps Technician.
This inspection will tell us what needs to happen to make sure your home, vacation property, or rental is as safe as it can be. Whether it’s a simple matter of needing a normal sweeping or more intense treatment, Fresh Sweeps will find it out.
Primary Residence or Vacation Property Changing Hands?
A Level 2 Inspection is a necessity for mortgage and insurance underwriting in most states and municipalities. Don’t wait if your chimney system obviously needs service. Click here to schedule an inspection now.