There’s nothing better than relaxing on the couch, reading a good book, and keeping warm by the fire. However, this fantasy is easily ruined if your fireplace isn’t working. When most people encounter a problem with their fireplace, there first course of action is to try to fix it themselves. However, unless you are a chimney sweep professional, chances are you don’t really know a whole lot about fireplaces. If this sounds familiar, don’t worry- we’re here to help! Here are the four most common reasons why your fireplace might not be working:
The damper is partially closed
The first thing to check if your fireplace isn’t working is the damper. In order for a fireplace to burn properly and safely emit smoke, the damper needs to be fully opened. However, it needs to be opened manually, as it should be closed when the fireplace is not in use. If the damper isn’t open fully, the fire can die out quickly or project smoke into the home. However, if you are unable to open your damper, it could be due to water damage or soot buildup. In this case, it’s crucial that you call a professional immediately.
You are using unseasoned firewood
The type of firewood you use in your fireplace can have a direct impact on whether your fire burns properly. You should only use seasoned, or fully dried, firewood in your fireplace. When wood is too moist or green, it doesn’t burn well and can create more smoke than heat.
The chimney flue is too small
If your chimney flue is the wrong size, it can result in smoke buildup that will flood into your home. To check if your chimney flue is the right size, keep in mind that your fireplace opening should be smaller than ten times the size of the flue. It’s common for older chimneys to have flues that are too small. If this is the case, contact The Original Chimney Sweepers and we will gladly replace it for you.
Your chimney needs to be cleaned
The most common reason why a fireplace isn’t working properly is because the chimney is too dirty. Over time, ash and creosote can build up in a chimney and prevent smoke from being able to exit the chimney safely. It can also lead to the release of carbon monoxide. Remember that you should have your chimney professionally cleaned at least twice annually.
Now that you have a better idea as to why your chimney isn’t working, you can fix the problem! However, while these are all common reasons why your fireplace isn’t working properly, there can be other culprits. If it’s been a while since your chimney has been professionally cleaned, you may have a blockage or creosote buildup. Both of these things can cause your fireplace to have excess smoke, emit toxic carbon monoxide gas, or generally work poorly. It’s crucial to hire a professional chimney sweep at least two times per year. If your chimney isn’t working and you can’t figure out why- or it’s been six months since its last cleaning- contact The Original Chimney Sweepers today!