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How Often Should I Have My Chimney Inspected?

When owning a home with a chimney and fireplace system, it is the responsibility of the homeowners to have it professionally swept and inspected at least once a year. The Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA), the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), and other national non-profit fire safety organizations recommend having you chimney professionally swept and inspected annually. This is one of the most important home maintenance as it is related to the safety of your family. For over 25 years, Atlas Chimney has provided quality professional chimney maintenance, which includes repairs and installation services to residents across the Austin area. You can trust our CSIA-certified chimney technicians to ensure your chimney is in top working condition and will remain safe and efficient throughout the year. Chimney inspection is vital, and we would like to tell you more about what you’ll expect from our professionals.

Why do I need to have my chimney professionally inspected?

How Often Should I Have My Chimney Inspected - Austin TX - Atlas ChimneyThe national chimney experts recommend every homeowner to schedule this particular professional maintenance service at least once a year to ensure there are no flue blockages or any other type of damages, which could lead to dangerous fire hazards or other problems. With Atlas Chimney, we include a basic Level 1 inspection with your annual chimney sweeping appointment. However, if you are buying or selling a home or if you have made any changes to your fireplace since your previous chimney inspection, then you will need a Level 2 inspection. Our Level 2 inspection includes the attic, basement, and crawl spaces around the chimney. This will also be the inspection required after an earthquake, tornado, lightning strike, chimney fire or other events that may have damaged the chimney. If you suspect any problems that need more extensive investigation, a Level 3 inspection would be recommended. This level requires the removal of components such as a wall of the chimney – in order to determine the source of the problem that could lead to a devastating house fire – if neglected.

What can I expect from a chimney inspection from Atlas Chimney?

When sweeping your chimney, our CSIA-certified professionals will be doing a courtesy check to ensure nothing is blocking the inner flue. We will also keep an eye out for any damages to the liner. Both of these issues could lead to a potential carbon monoxide leak into your home. After sweeping your chimney, we will inspect the condition of the bricks and mortar joints on the exterior of your chimney. If we do find any damaged or missing masonry, we will provide photographs of the damages in our inspection report along with an honest estimate of the repairs that will be needed to get your chimney back to working safely.

Take advantage of our less busy off-season right now! Contact us today to schedule your professional chimney inspection.

A Home Inspector Is Not a Chimney Expert

You believe that you have found the house of your dreams. You want to make an offer, but you will need to schedule a professional home inspection before the sale is final. This is necessary to ensure that all of the systems in the home are working properly and safely. Receiving a thumbs up from the inspector may lead you to think that you will not have to worry about taking care of repairs. However, Atlas Chimney would like to tell you why you should consider getting a second opinion. Our Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA)-certified technicians have the experience and training to spot chimney damage and other problems. We would like to tell you more about the importance of a professional chimney inspection while buying a home.

Why do I need a professional chimney inspection in addition to a home inspection?

A Home Inspector is Not a Chimney Expert - Austin TX - Atlas ChimneyWhile the home inspector you hire will be able to tell you about foundation problems and electrical and plumbing issues, there are certain areas outside of his or her expertise, according to Trulia. Although your home inspector will most likely shine a flashlight up the chimney, he or she will not be closely examining the interior. A professional chimney technician will perform a Level 2 inspection. Level 2 inspections use a special video camera to closely examine every inch of the chimney. This not only ensures that possible problems will be found, but it also provides photographic evidence.

What does a Level 2 chimney inspection include?

Several decades ago, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) developed three different levels of professional chimney inspections. The most basic Level 1 inspection includes checking out the readily accessible parts of the chimney. This checks the soundness of the structure and makes sure the chimney is clear from obstructions. A Level 2 inspection involves a closer examination of the chimney and includes the attic, basement, and crawl space. Real estate transactions and changes to the system require Level 2 inspections. They are also required after a malfunction of the chimney such as a fire or an external event like an earthquake or tornado. A Level 3 inspection is necessary for further investigation to diagnose a possible hazard. This may involve the removal of a chimney wall or even the destruction of the entire structure.

Considering buying a home? Don’t forget to contact us at Atlas Chimney to schedule a professional chimney inspection to be sure the chimney will work safely and efficiently.

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