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Common Mistakes Fireplace Owners Make

Fireplaces add an unbeatable atmosphere to any living space. They bring family and friends together with their warm and welcoming aesthetic. In addition, the wide array of design and style options mean that anyone can find the perfect fit for their personal tastes.Common Mistakes Fireplace Owners Make - Tullahoma TN - A-1 Chimney

Yet, owning a fireplace also requires a lot of responsibility of the part of the homeowner. Check out these more common mistakes the fireplace owners typically make. Do your best to avoid them down the line!

Skipping An Annual Inspection

Scheduling annual inspections is a vital part in maintaining the health of your chimney and fireplace. Annual inspections are the most effective way to protect your brickwork and prevent chimney fires from occurring. Your certified chimney sweep can check for blockages and creosote accumulation, as well. All of these steps help you avoid deterioration and debris build-up in the future.

Not Scheduling Repairs

If any repairs are needed in your chimney or fireplace, scheduling them as soon as possible will benefit you a lot in the long run. Consulting with a chimney sweep about the best possible ways to approach any cracks, holes, or deterioration will be the best option for keeping your chimney standing strong for years to come.

Also, fixing these issues sooner, rather than later, will save you money and stress down the line. The longer problems persist, the worse they become. Plus, the more expensive the repairs will be. On top of all this, letting problems go unresolved leads to a higher risk of chimney settlement or collapse. This puts your home and family at risk of injury.

Dismissing Smoke Detector Maintenance

Smoke detectors play a huge role in keeping homes and families safer throughout the year. Smoke and carbon monoxide detectors often are the first or only ways people are alerted to dangerous situations in their home. They can make all the difference in whether or not everyone gets out safely, should a fire occur or harmful toxins be present in the area.

Install smoke and carbon monoxide detectors in various places of your home to ensure any potential dangers are detected. They should be located on every level of the home, outside every sleeping area, and in every bedroom. In addition, you will also want to keep them away from windows. This is to ensure no drafts or winds interfere with their operation.

Also, be sure you are testing your detectors at least once a month to ensure they are working properly. You also will want to replace the batteries on a regular basis, too. Not to mention, don’t forget to replace the detector itself every decade, even if it appears to be working properly!

We Can Serve You!

The experts at A-1 Chimney Specialist want to help you out with any and all of your fireplace needs. So, turn to us today!

Getting Rid of Creosote

Have a certified chimney sweep inspect and clean your chimney to avoid the dangers of creosote build-up.

Have a certified chimney sweep inspect and clean your chimney to avoid the dangers of creosote build-up.

It’s dirty. It’s sticky. It is extremely flammable. Creosote is something that is almost impossible to avoid, and is extremely harmful to your chimney. However, if you catch it in time, creosote can be removed before it sinks into the structure of your chimney. To get more information on a chimney sweep or any other chimney related questions, contact the professionals at A-1 Chimney Specialists.

What is creosote?

Creosote is the byproduct that is released when untreated wood burns. This will then clump together and cause blockages inside of your chimney. When these clumps grow large enough, they can begin to slow the draft through your chimney. This makes the smoke and harmful gases unable to exit the home. This can put you and your family in danger of Carbon Monoxide poisoning. The symptoms for CO poisoning include anything from headaches and nausea to severe cases of difficulty breathing and even fatality. Creosote can also lead to chimney fires. When the heat from the fire comes into contact with the clumps, it can begin to spark. Since chimney fires spread so easily, it can overtake your home in minutes.

How do you get rid of creosote?

The best way to get rid of creosote is to have a chimney sweep. You should have at least one a year, but it is recommended that you have two. One should be after burning season to remove any build up, and the second should be before to remove anything that they may have missed or that has built up over the summer. The person doing your chimney sweep should always be Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) certified. To prepare the chimney, make sure that you do not burn any fires for at least 24 hours so that the unit has enough time to cool down. Next, move all of the furniture away from the fireplace so that it does not become dirty or damaged. Lastly, for their safety and the safety of the technicians lock your pets away in a spare room. You can find a reliable chimney sweep by asking friends and family, or by looking at various online websites.

The Science of Combustion

You need three things to create fire – oxygen, fuel and heat. Believe it or not, both chemistry and physics play a critical role.

Understanding the mechanics of fire can help you make decisions that maximize your safety and the performance of your heating system.

Understanding the mechanics of fire can help you make decisions that maximize your safety and the performance of your heating system.

This Danger is Silent

All About Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

Have you experienced unexplainable bouts of nausea, feeling light-headed especially when you’re inside and magically feeling a lot better when you are outside your home where you can breathe in fresh air?  You may have been poisoned by carbon monoxide – an odorless, tasteless and unseen gas circulating in your very home slowly destroying your body and its immune system. Believe it or not, keeping your chimney regularly cleaned and inspected can help prevent this scenario.

Carbon monoxide can leak into your home because of an obstruction in your chimney.

Carbon monoxide can leak into your home because of an obstruction in your chimney.

The Reason Behind It

Basically, carbon monoxide forms when there is no fresh air coming inside the house. This is usual when Winter arrives because we all want to keep ourselves cozy once the temperatures start to drop. Carbon monoxide can come as a by-product from combustion in our fireplaces or furnaces when there is not enough available oxygen to complement the carbon component to form the lesser evil carbon dioxide gas instead. When we forget to do the necessary preparations to ensure that our furnaces function well, we are causing danger to ourselves and the whole family. This greatly increases the risk of deadly carbon monoxide poisoning.

CO2 Inside You

Carbon monoxide in the body can be very harmful. It clings to your red blood cells and takes the place of oxygen thus preventing the body from getting enough nutrients. This eventually causes bigger and even permanent damage. Doctors usually have difficulty diagnosing this since the symptoms are, more often than not, very similar to that of a typical flu. The symptoms that do stand out are these and they may happen from the start of exposure:

  • Headache and dizziness
  • Trouble in Breathing
  • Unconsciousness

Unfortunately, death is very possible even within a span of twenty minutes if there is already too much exposure to it. Yes, carbon monoxide can kill you.

Prevention & Restoration

To better know if this silent killer exists in your home it’s best to have carbon monoxide detectors. This equipment will help you see if this dangerous poison is starting to linger in your home. We also recommend annual check-up and sweeping of your chimney and fireplace. This can help you see what needs to be fixed, replaced and renewed.

At A1 Chimney Specialists, we highly regard the safety of your home and the health of the people living inside. Since the year 2000 and until today, we continue to serve the people of Tullahoma and Winchester Tennessee, gaining many loyal customers through quality service.  With us, your safety is always a guarantee.