Having a fireplace can be a great asset to any home. Not only does it keep people warm during the winter, but it is also a great place to gather around and spend some quality family time. Having a cup of hot chocolate around the fireplace on a cold winter night can be a great way to relax and take the mind off of stressful things.
For people in the Northeast, particularly New York, a fireplace is a much-needed addition to the house. New York is a place that is very well known for its sights and surroundings. However, living there during the winter can be cold and harsh.
Fireplaces are a great source of heat, and having them in the home during the winter can cut down on electrical bills and help save money. However, to ensure safe and efficient heating, fireplaces and chimneys need to be inspected and cleaned at least once a year.
When there is a limited budget to hire professional chimney services, the tips below will be able to help anyone stay safe and maximize their chimney’s use.
- Let the Fireplace and Chimney Cool Off
It is always best to wait for a few hours or perhaps even a whole day to let the fireplace cool down before it is cleaned. Cleaning it right after using it can cause damage and won’t allow debris to settle fully.
- Clean the Surroundings First
Whenever someone is cleaning the chimney, they must first make sure that the surrounding areas near the fireplace are clean. Burnt wood and other substances or debris can spread throughout the rugs or furniture, so store them away in a safe place for the time being. It is also a good idea to cover the surrounding floor area with a sheet or tarpaulin to make sure that the floor remains clean.
- Clean Creosote Buildup
Creosote is the sticky black substance that is seen in the chimney. It is made from the unburned wood particles, tar, smoke, and other debris that mixes with water vapor. It is a flammable substance, and having it in the chimney for a long time can cause a lot of health problems for the whole family. It should be cleaned thoroughly with a chimney brush to prevent any buildup.
- Invest in a Chimney Brush
Having a chimney brush is an essential tool that can make DIY chimney cleaning much easier. It is a great investment that will save a lot of money because it grants anyone the ability to clean and sweep the chimney on their own instead of always having to rely on professionals. Chimney brushes come in different shapes and sizes, so anyone can go to any local store and find one that will fit their house’s chimney perfectly.
- Wear Protective Glasses
Safety is paramount when cleaning the chimney. The person cleaning is usually at the roof of their house and looking straight down into the fireplace, so they must wear protective glasses to avoid any debris or dust from getting into their eyes. Protective glasses will not only keep the eyes safe, but they will also help see clearer down the chimney, allowing the person to spot the dirty sections with ease.
- Check the Bricks to Make Sure They Are Intact
Most will often see cracked or loose bricks in an old chimney due to the wear and tear it endures. This can be a dangerous sight because it may pop out anytime and cause severe injuries. There may also be moss buildup or plants around certain parts of the chimney –don’t forget to clean these areas away. However, if the job is too dangerous, it is advised to call an expert right away and have it dealt with.
- Clear Debris from The Firebox
This is the area where the fire usually takes place, so it will naturally have a lot of debris building up. It is also the part of the chimney that is most exposed to higher temperatures making it deteriorate over time. Ash and soot will build up quickly, so cleaning the firebox is a vital part of maintenance. A shovel or vacuum can be used to clear out the remaining dust and ash from the burnt wood and to clean the remaining parts that are hard to get.
Keeping the chimney clean will not only ensure that the whole family is safe, but it will also stretch out the chimney’s maximum use. Foul odors will be reduced, and most importantly, a clean chimney aids in the prevention of chimney fires. According to the Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Services in New York, chimneys are one of the leading structures that cause residential fires in the state. To avoid this risk, hiring a professional chimney service in New York to conduct a safety inspection and thorough cleaning is extremely vital.
Long Island Roofing and Chimney is one of the best companies when it comes to taking care of roofing, chimney, gutters, and other home maintenance and improvement projects. They are a company based on Long Island, New York, striving to help people in improving their homes.
Contact Long Island Roofing and Chimney today at 631-205-6177 (Suffolk County), 516-605-6108 (Nassau County), or click here to request a quote.