Home Safety: Keeping Heat Sources in Their Place
Residential heating sources like wood and gas-fueled fireplaces excel at making homes more comfortable and cozy. But they can only do this if the heating system is operating properly. If a system doesn’t get the right amount of air, if the flue is blocked, or one of a dozen other things is amiss, problems can arise.
What sort of problems? Well, heat, if not properly managed, can build up to create fire dangers. A lack of proper exhaust flow can flood a room with smoke or other dangerous gasses. Damages to the structure of the chimney can even lead to house fires.
That’s why regular chimney inspections and sweepings from Fresh Sweeps are so important. We can improve both home safety and home comfort.
Chimney Systems Build Flammable Residue
When wood is burned, all of the material in the logs is not turned into heat or gases. What remains is a combination of ash, soot, tar, and creosote. While most of the ash remains in the fireplace’s fire box, the soot, tar, and creosote normally land – and stick – to the surfaces of the chimney system. This happens each time the fireplace is used, whether for a cozy, once-in-awhile fire or to regularly heat the living space for an extended period of time.
These three impurities, even though they originally didn’t burn when the logs were lit, are still capable of catching fire. With enough heat in the fireplace, they can ignite and burn at a high temperature. This is particularly true when softer or sappier woods are burned or if the fireplace has been used over an extended period of time.
Chimney Fires Aren’t Rare or Minor Problems
Fireplaces and other heating appliances are responsible for over 20,000 structure fires a year in the United States. While these life-threatening and property-destroying events are avoidable, the challenge is that to the untrained eye, this gradual building up of flammable residue isn’t obvious. That’s why you need the help of Fresh Sweeps
Buildup in Your Chimney
The First Level or stage is when the build-up is largely made of dirty soot or particles. Using special techniques and brushes, Fresh Sweeps Certified Chimney Sweeps can remove this residue that’s normally associated with well-combusted, drier wood fuels and a fireplace that burns hotter and more cleanly.
The Second Level or stage is indicated by flakes of residue starting as low as in the fireplace itself but accumulating more thickly in around the damper and up into the flue. Even the lower part of the chimney itself can start becoming a haven for these dangerous, tar-heavy materials. Fresh Sweeps Certified Chimney Sweeps handle these threats whether in fireplaces or wood stoves.
The Third Level or stage truly is the worst, and can be a sign either of poor combustion of fuels or prolonged use of the heating appliance without proper chimney sweeping. Here, the gummy black residue gets thicker and stickier. In extreme cases, it can appear almost as a liquid trickle coming back down the flue. Fresh Sweeps Certified Chimney Sweeps can safely remove this threat but it requires extreme diligence, the right process, and a commitment to return the home to a much safer state.
Learn more about how Fresh Sweeps significantly improves the safety of homes and residential rental properties by clicking HERE now. And keep reading about other threats to residential occupants associated with Indoor Air Quality – including the dangers of carbon monoxide and nitrogen dioxide.