Serving Waldorf for 40 years!

So, you’re gearing up to get a cozy fire going on a cold winter evening, but find yourself disappointed when things aren’t operating as efficiently as you hoped. So, what’s the problem? Well, it could be a number of things, but the way you approach the fire-building process can have a big impact on your overall success. Follow our guidelines below to make sure you’re doing everything right. Are you still experiencing issues? Then it’s time to call in our experts! We can help with it all.

Are You Using Seasoned Wood?wood stove with accessories

First of all, make sure the fuel you are using is well-seasoned. This means no wet logs and definitely no garbage! The wood should have been dried out for at least six months and, if you’re storing your own, it should be kept in an area that is well-protected, but also well-ventilated. A shed with a strong, sturdy roof and open sides are ideal!

If you’re purchasing your fuel, look for pieces that are shorter in length, dark and split at the ends, and that look less fresh. They should also be lightweight, and they should make a hollow, clunking sound when smacked against another piece. These are all indicators that moisture has had ample time and opportunity to escape, and you’ll get a much better burn when putting your fireplace to use.

What happens if you use unseasoned wood? Tons of acidic water will work it’s way through your system, causing a lot of damage along the way, creosote will form at a quicker rate, and these pieces will create a lot of smoke, which could easily work its way into your home. Your fires won’t burn as hot, either, and all in all the experience will be less than ideal. It’s well worth it to find the best fuel possible!

Is Your Damper Open?

Another common problem homeowners face is smoke billowing into their home. Fixing this is often as easy as opening your damper! Before lighting anything, it is vital that your damper is wide open, so that smoke and any potentially dangerous fumes, such as carbon monoxide, can effectively escape.

Along with keeping you and your family safer, an open damper also ensures smelly fumes don’t stink up your rugs, carpets, furniture, and curtains, and they help to keep that ideal smoke-free aesthetic when lighting fires in your home.

Has Your System Been Professionally Inspected?

Now, if you have yet to get your annual inspection on the books, then it’s time to get it scheduled as soon as possible. Sometimes, the issues with how your fires burn can be resolved easily without professional care, but other times the problem is something more serious. A CSIA Certified Chimney Sweep will check for creosote accumulation, as well as any damages or structural issues that may be hindering your system’s performance.

Sometimes a problem can be fixed with a new part, such as a chimney cap or top-sealing damper, while other times some more extensive repair work will be in order. In extreme scenarios, the size or height of the chimney will need to be modified, in which case some restoration services will be necessary.

All in all, finding any issues and appropriately addressing them is vital. The longer you put off this maintenance, the more prone you will be to gas leaks, house fires, chimney fires, carbon monoxide exposure, smoke inhalation, and more. It’s not worth taking any chances! Call us in for an inspection right away. Our sweeps all qualified to perform all three levels of chimney inspections, so we’ll be able to help out, no matter what state your chimney is in. Call today to set something up.

Do You Have Smoke & Carbon Monoxide Detectors Installed?

Both smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are necessary devices to have in a home, and they should be installed on every level to ensure everyone stays as safe as possible. It’s also recommended to install them outside every bedroom, so everyone is sure to hear them go off, even if they’re asleep.

These devices have saved multiple lives over the years, and they often offer the first warning signs that there is danger inside the home. Escaping a smoke-filled house as soon as possible is essential, otherwise, the fumes could cause the residents to pass out and not get out safely. It’s also vital to leave if carbon monoxide is present, but this gas has no color or odor, so detecting it is basically impossible.

Smoke and carbon monoxide detectors could be the difference between life and death for you and your family members, so be sure to invest in some immediately if you have yet to do so. Once they are installed, check the batteries at least once per month, and replace them as often as recommended by the manufacturer.

Magic Broom Is The Team To Trust

Magic Broom has been serving the area since 1978, and we have extensive experience handling all types of chimney-related issues. We put our customers first every time, and you can bet that we know our stuff, thanks to our certifications from the NFI and the CSIA. There’s simply no team better trust! Give us a call today, so we can help with it all.