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Things About Your Chimney A Home Inspector Can Miss

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When you are buying or selling a home, one of the most important steps in this process is the home inspection. However, if the home has a chimney and fireplace system, you should know that this inspection does not sufficiently examine its condition. In fact, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recommends having a Level 2 chimney inspection of any home involved in a real-estate transaction.

Atlas Chimney provides all levels of professional chimney inspection services by our Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) certified technicians. This way, you know can trust us to tell you exactly how safe the chimney really is! Home inspectors must be trained and certified in their field. However, they are not required to undergo professional training on how to inspect chimneys and fireplaces. Unfortunately, this means they could miss a potential chimney issue! We would like to tell you about a couple of things about a chimney that the CSIA noticed were missed by a home inspector.


What is one of the main reasons why a Level 2 professional chimney inspection is required when buying or selling a home? It’s to make sure the chimney and fireplace system meets all local building codes and standards, including the correct height of the chimney. The International Residential Code (IRC) enforces the 3-2-10’ chimney height rule. This means all chimneys should be at least two feet higher than any part of the building within 10 feet. In addition, is not less than three feet above the point where the chimney meets the roof. Home inspectors do not always check this requirement. This is unfortunate, because its essential for your chimney to draft properly!


In the CSIA article, “What the Home Inspector Missed, The Chimney Sweep Caught,” a damaged chimney chase cover was not discovered in the home inspection. This problem could lead to extensive and expensive water leak damage to the chimney and the rest of the home.  That is exactly why its important to be noted in a real-estate transaction. A home inspector rarely examines the condition of the different parts of a chimney. Parts such as a chase cover, chimney cap, and liner. However, a CSIA-certified chimney sweep includes every part of the chimney in a Level 2 inspection. This guarantees there are no problems lurking within or on top of your chimney!

Buying or selling a home? Contact us at Atlas Chimney today to schedule an appointment for a Level 2 chimney inspection!