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Fire Hazards

Spring brings with it the promise of rebirth and renewal. Students are looking forward to summer activities away from the routine of the school day, families plan vacations, and parents think about doing a deep down spring cleaning before these activities take place. It feels good to clean out closets and attics, get rid of items you haven’t used in years, rake the yard, open the windows and let the fresh air blow through. But there are some areas that it’s best to let the professionals clean. Two of those places are your fireplace and chimney system, and your dryer vents. The reason this is so important is that both of these places hold the potential for a home-threatening fire to break out.

Creosote Buildupfire

A major cause of chimney fires is creosote. As you burn wood in your fireplace, the moisture that is trapped in the wood is released, along with a wide variety of chemicals. As this travels up your chimney, it condenses and forms a layer of flammable material called creosote. All it takes is one little spark and you could have a full-fledged chimney fire.

When you think of a chimney fire, most often the thought that comes to mind is a full-fledged, roaring fire, with smoke and flames billowing out of the chimney. Sometimes this is the case. More often, however, the fire that occurs is small, often going completely unnoticed by the homeowner. This is because there isn’t usually enough airflow in your chimney to feed this type of fire. Because of this, most often a fire will burn itself out before you know it is happening. This is equally dangerous, because your chimney may have sustained damage and you don’t know to have it fixed. If the mortar is damaged, the gases that are produced through fire burning may be leaking back into your home, causing health issues for you, your family, and your pets.

Full Dryer Vents

Another common place for a house fire to begin is in your dryer vent. It’s common knowledge that you should clean out your dryer’s lint screen after every load or two of clothes that you dry, but this isn’t enough to keep your home safe from a dryer vent fire. Some of the lint that pulls off of your clothes gets through that lint screen no matter how often you clean it, and as it blows through the dryer vent, it can get caught along the sides, attracting even more lint with each load you dry. This lint buildup is also highly flammable, and a stray spark from your dryer could cause a devastating house fire.

Call Atlas Chimney

At Atlas Chimney, we have the qualified professionals and the tools to look deep into your chimney to discover any and all creosote that has built up and to remove this hazardous material. Not only are we chimney experts, but we are also dryer vent experts, too! Although it may seem like a simple job, we have the proper equipment to get the job done thoroughly and with less mess. Give us a call and let us take care of all your chimney and dryer vent cleaning needs!

Spring Is the Perfect Time for Cleaning Your Chimney

As we say goodbye to winter, the first thing on many homeowners’ minds is preparing a spring cleaning plan. Atlas Chimney would like to remind you to include your chimney on the list of home maintenance tasks. We want to share with you why it is so important to schedule your annual professional chimney sweeping and inspection appointment with us in the spring as well as what you can expect from our maintenance services.

Why is it so important to have my chimney cleaned in the spring?

After a season of heavy usage, your chimney may have sizable amounts of creosote accumulated on its inner walls. A natural compound that develops during combustion, creosote is problematic because it leads to unpleasant odors invading your home. It also creates a dangerous fire hazard in your chimney. Creosote is so flammable that the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) names it as a leading cause of chimney fires. It is equally as important to have your chimney professionally inspected in the spring to make sure there are no water leaks that could lead to masonry damage. You want to protect your chimney from water penetration to prevent the deterioration of the bricks and mortar joints.

What can I expect from a professional chimney maintenance appointment with Atlas Chimney?

Our chimney sweeps are trained and certified by the CSIA, which means you can trust them to be skilled, honest, and professional when they visit your home. We begin this maintenance service by laying down drop cloths around your hearth area to protect the flooring. We use specialized tools, including a high-powered vacuum and rotating brushes, to ensure we remove all creosote and soot. During this sweeping, we will also remove any blockages in the flue to allow the chimney to exhaust safely. After your chimney sweeping, we examine the outside of your chimney to see if there is any masonry damage or deterioration. We also provide you with photographs of any damage and a written estimate of the necessary repairs.

Be sure to include your chimney in your home spring cleaning plan. Contact us today at Atlas Chimney to schedule your appointment for your annual professional chimney maintenance services with our CSIA-certified chimney sweeps.

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