The cold, snowy days of winter bring so many fun activities: sledding, building snowmen, snowball fights, shoveling snow. There’s nothing better after a day of cold winter fun than warming up in front of a warm, crackling fire. It’s important to make sure, during those months of heavy winter usage, that you properly maintain your fireplace and chimney system.
What Damage Can Winter Weather Do
During the winter months, your chimney and fireplace take a lot of wear and tear. One reason for this is the freeze-thaw cycle. The mortar that connects the bricks and stones of your fireplace is very porous. Precipitation, whether in the form of rain, snow, or sleet, will soak into the mortar, and when the temperature drops to freezing, it will expand and cause larger holes to appear. In fact, according to pothole.info, when water freezes, it needs about ten percent more space to handle the expansion that takes place. When even more precipitation comes down, this cycle repeats itself until your mortar becomes unstable. The best way to avoid this is to call in the experts – the CSIA certified professionals from Copper Top Chimney Service.
Day to Day Maintenance
Although the best way to make sure that your chimney and fireplace system stay in top shape is to have your chimney inspected and cleaned on a yearly basis, there are some things that you can do during the winter months to make sure that your chimney and fireplace stay well-maintained.
- Watch out for excessive ash build-up. Although an inch or so of ash can actually help to build and keep a fire going, any more than that and you may have trouble keeping a fire burning.
- During the winter months, it’s important to keep loose branches and any other debris from your roof. Make sure that there aren’t any branches near the chimney area. Another problem can arise from loose needles and dried leaves drifting down your chimney. A way to prevent this is to make sure that your chimney cap is in good repair; this will keep any debris from going down the chimney and catching sparks from your fire, which could cause a chimney fire.
- Clean the glass chimney doors. These doors can catch soot from your fire, which will obstruct your view of the fire in your fireplace.
- Check your smoke detectors. This is important year round. Make sure that they are working and that the batteries are charged. Change your batteries every six months regardless if they are dead or not.
Yearly Professional Maintenance
The best way to ensure that you are keeping your chimney and fireplace in the best condition is to have it professionally inspected and cleaned on an annual basis. The best in the business is Copper Top Chimney Service. Their expert technicians offer chimney inspection and cleaning, but their expertise doesn’t stop there. Whether you need a new chimney cap, repair work, or chimney relining, the place to call is Copper Top Chimney Service. They can do all these things and more!