It feels great to relax in front of a roaring fire in the comfort of your home with family by your side. But when was the last time you had your fireplace and chimney cleaned? If you can’t remember, there is a chance that you and your family could be at risk of injury directly related to that warm and cozy fireplace.
While a beautifully decorated mantle and a warm fire make for a very aesthetically pleasing, cozy scene in the living room, there are not so obvious dangers that could lurk within a fireplace and chimney—outside of the fire-cautious rules you’ve given your children. Suburban Family spoke with COIT Cleaning and Restoration Services Manager Brad Scott, a CSIA-certified chimney cleaning expert, about the dangers hiding within your fireplace.
“It is important that homeowners have their fireplace and chimney cleaned every year,” says Scott. “It’s even more important to have that chimney inspected by a professional.”
To become a certified chimney cleaning expert by the CSIA (Chimney Safety Institute of America), Scott went through in-depth training and education about chimney cleaning and inspections.
“COIT is proud to say our team carries this type of certification,” says owner Lori Topiel. According to the CSIA, approximately 10,000 cases of carbon monoxide-related injuries are reported each year. Toxic gases can enter the home because of damaged flue liners, a build-up of soot, debris that may be clogging the passageways and birds’ nests that may be obstructing the chimney flue. With a yearly chimney inspection by a CSIA-certified chimney cleaning expert, injuries can be easily prevented in your home.
COIT uses a full-view video camera to inspect the inside of your chimney. Two cameras are actually used while one strictly provides a 360-degree view of a chimney’s flue liner. “This camera allows me to see potential hazards such as heaving deposits of soot, missing mortar and other causes that can lead to leakage of flue gases in the home,” explains Scott.
One of the dangers chimney inspectors are looking for is creosote that can build up inside the walls of the chimney. Creosote is a flammable substance that can over time potentially cause a chimney fire. The substance forms when unburned wood particles, ash and other gases combine as they flow through to the top of the chimney to exit your home.
While you may have been putting your feet up and relaxing by the fire to seek refuge from these frigid temperatures, it's not too late to have your fireplace and chimney inspected and cleaned. Eliminate the worry of a possible chimney fire or the possibility that toxic gases are being released into your home. A cleaning and inspection by COIT is a no-mess process that takes under an hour.
If it has been over a year, or if you cannot remember when you had your chimney cleaned last, call COIT today and set up an appointment so you can enjoy the rest of the winter indoors—in front of your fireplace.
COIT Cleaning and Restoration Services
609 Grace St. | Somerdale
Published (and copyrighted) in Suburban Family Magazine, Volume 8, Issue 9 (November, 2017).
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