Harky's Chimney & Home Services wants to remind homeowners about fireplace and chimney safety and having them inspected annually to keep occupants safe
HOUSTON, TX, UNITED STATES, September 30, 2019 /EINPresswire.com/ — An annual chimney inspection performed by a qualified professional can help prevent carbon monoxide leaking back into the home and chimney fires. These inspections can also identify potential fireplace/chimney issues to address before they become a more costly repair and save lives.
The National Fire Protection Association Standard (NFPA) 211 says, "Chimneys, fireplaces, and vents shall be inspected at least once a year for soundness, freedom from deposits, and correct clearances. Cleaning, maintenance, and repairs shall be done if necessary." This is the national safety standard – the standard takes into account the fact that even if you don't use your chimney often animals building nests in the chimney and/or deterioration of fireplace/chimney could still deem it unsafe to use.
The Facts About Chimney Fires
While a fireplace adds architectural character and value to your home, its real function is to carry dangerous flue gases safely out of your home. If not properly maintained the fireplace and chimney can cause chimney fires, destroy homes and kill occupants.
Indications of a chimney fire have been described as creating:
• loud cracking and popping noise
• a lot of dense smoke, and
• an intense, hot smell
You may see flames or dense smoke shoot from the top of the chimney and/or hear a low rumbling sound (such as the sound of a freight train). However, most chimney fires go undetected as they are slow-burning – they don’t have enough air or have enough fuel to be noticeable yet can still reach a very high temperature and cause structural damage. Most of these are primarily only detected by a chimney inspection.
Signs that You’ve Had a Chimney Fire
Given the additional risks of using a fireplace after a chimney fire occurred, here are signs that a professional chimney sweep will look for during inspection:
• “Puffy” or “honey combed” creosote
• Creosote flakes found on the roof or ground
• Roofing material damaged from hot creosote
• Cracks in exterior masonry
• Evidence of smoke escaping through mortar joints of masonry (brick, stone, etc) or clay tile liners
• Cracked or collapsed clay flue tiles
• Discolored and/or warped metal flue pipe or chimney cap
• Warped metal of the damper and/or metal smoke chamber connector pipe of a prefab (factory-built metal fireplace/chimney)
Creosote is black or brown in color and can be crusty and flaky, a tar-like substance, drippy and sticky, or shiny and hardened. It typically builds up on chimney flue liners and is typically due to restricted air supply, cool chimney temperatures, or burning unseasoned wood. All forms can actually occur in the same chimney – and whatever form it takes creosote is highly combustible.
If you think a chimney fire has occurred, call Harky’s Chimney & Home Services, LLC for a professional inspection. We can make recommendations on how to safely bring it back to code – whether it’s a simple repair to an entire fireplace and chimney rebuild. Each situation is unique – and having a professional chimney sweep inspect it is highly recommended.
As a reminder – clean chimneys typically don’t catch fire. The National Fire Protection Association Standard (NFPA) 211 recommends an annual chimney inspection performed by a qualified professional to help prevent carbon monoxide leaking back into the home and chimney fires. Cleaning, maintenance, and repairs shall be done if necessary. These inspections can also identify potential fireplace/chimney issues to address before they become a more costly repair and save lives. This is the national safety standard – the standard takes into account the fact that even if you don't use your chimney often animals building nests in the chimney and/or deterioration of fireplace/chimney could still deem it unsafe to use.
When it comes to sweeping the chimney, the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) recommends that open masonry fireplaces should be swept at 1/8 inch of sooty buildup, and sooner if there is any glaze present in the system. Even at a small 1/8” inch buildup it’s enough fuel buildup to cause a chimney fire and possible death of occupants. For prefabs (factory-built fireplaces) – they should be swept when any appreciable buildup occurs given the buildup is acidic and can easily shorten the life of the fireplace.
About Harky’s Chimney & Home Services, LLC
Harky's Chimney & Home Services, LLC ("Harky's") is a chimney sweep and home services company in Texas (we do business in Houston, DFW, San Antonio, Austin and Tyler) that utilizes leading technology. We operate under the Harky's Chimney & Home Services primarily for the residential customer and Apartment Chimney Sweeps for multi-family property managers. The owner, Todd Harkrider, is a highly-coveted CSIA-Certified Chimney Sweep, a CSIA-Certified Dryer Exhaust Technician, an executive board member of the South Central Hearth, Patio & BBQ Association (SCHPBA) and a member of the National HPBA Governmental Affairs Committee.
The Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association (HPBA), based in Arlington, Va., is the North American industry association for manufacturers, retailers, distributors, representatives, service firms and allied associates for all types of barbecue, patio and hearth appliances, fuels and accessories. The association provides professional member services and industry support in education, statistics, government relations, marketing, advertising, and consumer education.
The Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) is a nonprofit organization governed by a board of directors dedicated to the education, training, and certification of chimney and industry related professionals. In addition to passing a rigorous examination and re-certifying every three years, each person wishing to hold a CSIA certification must also agree to abide by a stringent Code of Ethics. CSIA Certified Chimney Sweeps have been spotted on Good Morning America, Dateline and 20/20, in the New York Times, Consumer Reports and Popular Mechanics, among many other national, regional and local publications and media.
Source: EIN Presswire