Your chimney may appear in great condition on the outside, but inside it could be hiding necessary repairs. How do you know when these repairs are needed?

Dr. SOOT performs sweep and scan chimney inspections that offer you peace of mind. These inspections can include a camera scan of the flue, where possible. We’ll check to see if your chimney is functioning properly or if it needs repairs before you can burn safely. The following are a few reasons why it’s important to schedule an inspection for your chimney.

Cracks in the Flue Can Cause a House Fire

Your flue is the liner inside your chimney that carries heat, toxic fumes and smoke out of your house. Over time, cracks and deterioration may develop from excessive heat or from having contact with water. Drops of water can cause your flue to deteriorate faster when your chimney is not properly covered with an approved spark arrestor, commonly known as a flue cap.

A cracked flue leaves your home exposed to heat and embers reaching combustible materials, or toxic fumes entering your home. A professional chimney inspector can check your flue for damage and offer options for repair.

Masonry Cracks Let the Outside In

If your chimney is made of brick, masonry repairs may be needed to keep it strong and stable. After years of heating and varying weather temperatures, masonry can deteriorate and cracks begin to develop. The damper should be tested to make sure it can be opened and closed. An inspection can offer a detailed analysis of your masonry and recommend repairs to keep your chimney strong and structurally sound.

Creosote and Animal Nests Cause House Fires

Creosote accumulates from burning wood or solid fuels and can lead to a chimney fire if not removed. Animals may use your chimney as a nest and should be removed before use.

An inspection or cleaning will make sure your chimney is clear and safe for burning.

Water Damage Leads to Expensive Repairs

If your chimney or flue is not properly covered with a flue cap, water will enter your chimney and can cause faster deterioration of your flue and can mean you’ll need to pay for a replacement flue sooner. A chimney sweep will check the condition of your chimney including the masonry, crown wash, the flue cap and recommend appropriate repairs.  This may range from minor masonry repairs, installation of flue cap/s, replacement of the top cement known as the crown wash.

You Don’t Know When the Last Inspection Was Done

When you buy a new home, you may not know when the last owner cleaned or inspected the chimney. In this case, it’s important to schedule a sweep and scan before you burn. This gives you a current benchmark on the health of your chimney, and you’ll be informed if there is need for current or future repairs for safety and optimal performance of your system.

At Dr. SOOT, our chimney condition checks offer a thorough examination of the health of your chimney and we take the time to go over the condition report and answer your questions.

For information on chimney inspections, contact the local experts at Dr. SOOT. You’ll have peace of mind the next time you warm yourself by the fire.