Eating your Thanksgiving turkey next to a roaring fire, opening your Christmas gifts while the fire burns out late into the night and having a romantic Valentine’s Day dinner with your sweetheart is only made to perfection next to a toasty warm fire. None of these holidays would have the same nostalgic ambiance without the addition of a fireplace. Although the holidays may seem far away, now is the time to ensure that your fireplace is ready it’s busy season.
Before the use of your fireplace in the fall/winter you need to check now to see if it’s in working condition. If your fireplace is dirty or clogged it poses a serious fire hazard. After the prolonged use of your fireplace it’s rather common to have a buildup of soot and creosote. To see if this is an issue in your fireplace open up the flue or damper and look up. You should be able to see light through the top of your fireplace. If you cannot see any external light it is time to clean your fireplace and chimney.
There is a cleanout door located on each and every fireplace. If you’d like to take the time to clean your fireplace yourself be diligent in appropriately covering the room in which the fireplace is located. Cleaning out the soot and creosote will be very messy and will likely ruin clothes and furniture. If you’re not comfortable that you will be able to accurately eliminate the buildup in your fireplace consider hiring a professional chimney sweep.
This is one of the only times of the year that a chimney sweep will perform their services. In the winter it can be very dangerous, even for a professional, to clean out your fireplace. Because of the harsh winter conditions it’s imperative that you take the time to clean your fireplace during the summer and fall.
It will be much easier and safer to access all the working parts to your fireplace during the summer and the fall. This will also ensure that your fireplace is in working condition by the holiday season. If you fail to realize you need maintenance done to your fireplace before the cold weather approaches it will be too late do repair anything before the season begins. This will leave you fire-less until the spring when a professional can once again come out to help you.
This article was written by Lauren Beerling. Lauren works with the Harman Stove Company in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Harman Stove Company sells a multitude of different fireplaces and stoves to fit the needs of any home.