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Chimney Safety week is here from September 30th- October 6th. This week is intended to raise awareness about chimney safety before the colder weather hits. While chimney safety should be considered every week, this week in particular we urge you to think about these chimney safety tips! From proper firewood to chimney fires, we hope you will take these tips into consideration before starting your fall fires this year.

Chimney Fires

Chimney fires are caused by dirty chimney and inflict damage to the structure, ultimately having the potential to destroy homes and injure your family. While many chimney fires are quiet, indications that a chimney fire has occurred or is occurring are loud cracking and popping noises, dense smoke and an “intense hot smell”. If you suspect you’ve had a chimney fire, do not light a fire until a certified sweep can inspect it and inform you of further steps to take.

Chimney Safety

The CSIA and NFPA both recommend annual inspections and maintenance for chimney systems due to build ups of soot, creosote and debris. Don’t light a fire this fall without having had an inspection in the past year. There are three levels of chimney inspections, Level 1, 2 and 3. These will inform you of any repairs, cleanings or accessories you may need for your chimney system to be ready for burn season.

Other Safety tips

If your chimney and fireplace system is safe, consider these other safety tips before using your fireplace this season.

  • If you own a wood burning fireplace, stove or insert, make sure to burn only properly seasoned firewood to avoid excess buildup or smoke.
  • Never close the damper while a fire is burning, the damper is an important aspect in keeping smoke and carbon monoxide out of your home.
  • If you have pets or small children in the house, consider fireplace doors or screens to prevent them from getting to close or falling into the fireplace.
  • Install or check your smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors.
  • Keep your fireplace and the space around it clean and free from decorations or debris.
  • Pouring water on hot embers does not ensure they are properly extinguished. Wait to go to bed until they are fully extinguished!