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The Dangers Of Creosote

creosote clean upAny homeowner with a fireplace should be aware of the importance of regular chimney maintenance. Annual inspections are vital in ensuring the safety of one’s home and family members. Between blockages, cracks or holes, and the various types of build-up that can accumulate over time, using it before getting the okay from an expert could cause countless negative consequences.

What Is Creosote?

Creosote is a dangerous substance that accumulates in a fireplace as fires are lit throughout the year. It comes in different colors and forms, and it is a major cause for chimney fires. To avoid issues with creosote, the most important step you can take is to call in a certified professional who can remove it properly.

Many feel that chimney sweeping and cleaning is a job that can be done themselves, but this is not the safest option. Often times, certain chemicals need to be used to remove excess debris and, without the proper use of tools and appropriate products, a homeowner could easily cause damage to their chimney, their home, or themselves.

To ensure that everything will run smoothly throughout your next burning season, hire a pro to check your chimney out. They know exactly what to look for and which steps to take to get your chimney in the best condition possible before putting it to more frequent use.

Avoiding Build-Up

While creosote is not completely unavoidable, there are ways to slow down the rate at which it accumulates. The main things you can do are burn wood that is properly seasoned, regulate air flow, and control the temperatures of the fires you burn.

  • Seasoned Wood: Once you figure out what to look for when it comes to picking your firewood, finding the best fuel for your home will be no problem. Seasoned wood is lighter weight, has more cracks and splits at the ends, and will make a distinct high-pitched sound when hit together (unseasoned wood will sound duller).
  • Air Flow: One of the best ways to ensure air is moving properly through your chimney is to have an expert check for blockages and build-up. If the flow is restricted at all, then you will likely start facing issues. Creosote will show up a lot quicker and smoke and other toxins will back up into your home. This affects the health of loved ones and causes damage to furniture and other belongings.
  • Fire Temperatures: The temperature of your fire is affected by the fuel you burn and how much of it you are using. To keep a healthy, hot fire going, use smaller amounts of well-seasoned fuel. This will cause a quicker burn, but you can easily keep the fire going by re-fueling it more often. A little extra work will be well worth avoiding large amounts of creosote throughout the chimney.

At A-1 Chimney Specialist, we know how to get your chimney in the best shape possible before you start lighting up those Fall fires. Call us in today!