The Effects Chimney Fires Have On Your Chimney
Chimney fires are extremely dangerous as you may not know they are happening until it’s too late. Most chimney fires are quiet and slow burning, they’re usually caused by either a stray spark or high temperatures that ignite creosote buildup. Creosote is a highly combustible substance that often looks sticky and tar-like.
What makes chimney fires so dangerous is that it creates pathways for carbon monoxide to enter your home, and destroys the defenses that protect against a future house fire. If the damage is not repaired, a stray spark or second chimney fire can easily escalate into a house fire.
There are signs to look for to indicate there’s been a chimney fire, and by calling a professional chimney sweep team they’ll be able to determine if there was a fire. Some of the signs that we look for in a chimney that might indicate a chimney fire are:
- Shards or flakes of creosote on the ground, around the roof, or in the firebox
- Pieces of creosote that look puffy or like honeycomb
- Broken or cracked pieces of flue tiles
- Damaged or melted roofing material
- A discolored or disfigured chimney cap/rain cap or chase cover
- Cracks in the masonry on the outside of the chimney
- Heat damage to a TV antenna or dish
- Warped metal components like a metal damper, smoke chamber connection pipe, flue liner, or factory-built chimney
- It’s important to have your chimney inspected by professionals every year, they can look for any signs of a previous chimney fire or any creosote buildup. Having your chimney inspected by professionals can decrease the chances of a chimney fire occurring
- Chimney fires occur at an alarming rate, over 25,000 chimney fires account for over 120 million dollars in damage to the homeowner’s property every year. Not only is structural damage caused, but thousands of injuries and even many result in death every year from chimney fires that spread to the structure of the home.
There are a few ways to prevent a chimney fire, that are easy for anyone.
- Keeping a clean chimney, with the proper care and regular cleanings
- Only burn materials that are meant to be burned, don’t burn ones that could harm your chimney.
- Schedule annual chimney inspections with a professional chimney sweep and restoration team.