5 Reliable Steps to Fireplace Maintenance
With winter coming, it’s time to gather the family around the hearth and enjoy the warmth of the fireplace together. If you have a gas fireplace, it is time to clean the components and re-ignite the pilot light if it’s been off for the summer.
If you have a wood-burning fireplace, here are 5 easy to follow steps to make sure that your fireplace is working well.
1. Cap the chimney!
If you don’t have one already, you may want to consider a chimney cap. It’s a good way to keep the moisture out. It can also prevent trees, branches, and leaves from getting in the chimney, which can be hazardous. Animals are notorious for nesting in chimneys, so putting a chimney cap on will keep them out.
2. Clean out the Firebox
Wood-burning fireplaces are beautiful but can be very messy (not to mention dangerous) if you don’t attend to the ashes that gather in the firebox.
Aim to clean it out once a week, or earlier if the ashes reach three inches deep. Ash can continue to accumulate long after a fire stops burning, so be mindful of that as well.
3. A Clean Slate
Many fireplace interiors and surrounds are made of slate, which is a stylish and sturdy choice. However, it isn’t maintenance free.
In order to keep it preserved, looking great and protected against damage, you’ve got to clean it. Lemon oil is a good choice. Clean the slate with a damp cloth, removing debris. Once it is dry, polish it with a little lemon oil on a rag.
4. Call the Chimney Sweep
Plan to call the chimney sweep in for a good cleaning and inspection of your chimney. They’ll remove accumulated debris from the chimney, as well as make sure that all of the components are in working order.
They’ll also check for leaks and cracks, which can pose health and safety problems, in addition to structural problems.
5. Open the Window
Opening a window is a wise move when operating your fireplace because it can help freshen the air in the room, especially if it is smoky.
Chimneys are often smoky if there is residue in them, or if there is a great temperature difference between indoors and outdoors. You can alleviate that by using your fireplace more often.
Having the window open also creates a cross-ventilation which can help make flames bigger and last longer in the fireplace.
We help with all kinds of home heating needs, including gas log fireplaces. Give Albert Nahman Plumbing in Berkeley, CA a call at (510)-843-6904 to find out more.