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How To Prepare For a Chimney Sweeping Appointment?

When we were younger, didn’t we all wish we could live in a giant castle with big windows and huge chimneys? Well, the castle part might have not come true, but for those of us who live in a house with chimneys, the story still holds a little something to talk about. However, we all dread the periodic chimney sweeping appointment. People often picture a chimney sweeping appointment like a war being raged on. This is not necessarily the case, especially if you happen to live in the Texas Hill Country. Our technicians are a mere call away.

Pride of the house

did you know graphic

A beautiful and sparkingly clean chimney might be the starting point of a conversation, but maintaining it yourself is simply not feasible. Let us consider the facts here:

  • Cleaning a chimney without first covering everything means simply creating more work than you have solved; everyone who has tried poking his head into the duct can attest to this
  • Normal vacuum cleaners simply DO NOT work
  • Creosote build-up can get really stubborn to just brush off

It can turn dangerous if ignored

You might not be aware of this, but after a while, creosote build-up starts accumulating inflammable chemicals on the flue wall. Better be safe than sorry. This is to mention nothing of the fact that the mortar and cement in the chimney ducts can start weakening due to the fact that they start retaining vapours after a while, being made of porous material to facilitate the passage of smoke. In fact, according to the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA), every house owner should without fail have their chimney checked at least once annually to ensure that it is in the optimum condition. We can provide the best service and guarantee complete satisfaction.

Getting to the top of the problem

Unless you hire professional help, getting to the root (or we should say the top in this case) of the problem might be difficult. Diagnosing a chimney problem can seem deceptively simple, but you might be starting at the wrong side altogether. And while the mark of a true professional is minimum participation from your end, a few simple steps can help streamline the process a lot.

  • Clear the area to ensure that the mantel and the surrounding areas are empty to help the technicians complete the work faster.
  • Make sure to have a proper area of safety ready; let the young ones know that the area is off limits until the work is finished and make sure that the pets do not inadvertently stray in.
  • A service is never really complete until you get all your questions answered. Always do your research beforehand. We know that a 100% satisfied customer is the best selling point of our firm.

Do not put it off

A mess free chimney cleaning might be a dream to most of us, but there are firms which guarantee exactly that. What would you prefer: Warmth and relaxation or worry about when acrid smoke might come bellowing in due to an unnoticed flue blockage? Call in the professionals right now and get a sweeping appointment because at the end, the headache is not worth it.

All About Creosote

The last thing you want to deal with during fireplace season (or anytime, for that matter!) is a chimney fire. However, if you neglected to schedule a professional chimney sweeping before the arrival of cold weather, you may be in danger of this devastating event. As the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) states, dirty chimneys can cause chimney fires. Although soot and debris can lead to a chimney fire, the main cause of a chimney fire is creosote. Atlas Chimney would like to tell you more about creosote by answering some frequently asked questions.

All About Creosote - Austin TX - Atlas ChimneyHow does creosote form in my chimney?

Creosote is a natural result from the process of burning wood. As the byproducts of combustion like smoke, gases, water vapor, hydrocarbon, tar fog, unburned wood particles, and other assorted minerals leave the fireplace and flow up into the cooler upper walls of the chimney, condensation occurs. Creosote is the result of this condensation and forms a residue that sticks to the interior walls of your chimney.

What does creosote look like?

Varying in appearance, creosote is either black or brown. Its texture can be shiny and hard, crusty and flaky, or gummy and sticky. Atlas Chimney has seen all three different textures in the same chimneys.

Why is creosote so dangerous?

No matter what creosote looks like, it is always highly combustible. If you have large accumulations of creosote deposits in your chimney, a chimney fire can be easily ignited if the flue reaches a high enough temperature.

What encourages the accumulation of creosote?

You could have a restricted air supply by closing the glass doors and failing to open the damper wide enough. Since there will not be enough make-up air to quickly move heated smoke up the chimney, the smoke and other byproducts of combustion will stay longer inside the chimney to form more creosote. Cooler than normal chimney temperatures is another related factor that leads to large deposits of creosote accumulating in your chimney. If you burn unseasoned wood, you can also end up with large amounts of creosote. Since unseasoned wood has not been fully dried, your fire uses so much energy to burn off the water that is trapped in the logs. This results in cooler smoke going up the chimney, which is much more likely to produce a large amount of creosote.

Be sure your chimney is creosote-free and ready for fireplace season! Contact us at Atlas Chimney to schedule a professional chimney sweeping today.

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