If you’re buying or selling a home, you’ve likely hired a home inspector to look things over, which means your chimney and fireplace should be ready to go…right? Not exactly. A home inspector does a lot of things, and it’s true that a brief overview of the chimney is on their checklist, but there’s a lot more to chimney inspections that most simply aren’t aware of.
Because of this, it’s always important to hire a CSIA-certified chimney professional to perform all of your chimney inspections, especially during the transfer of property. In these cases a level 2 inspection is required, and you’ll definitely want that in-depth analysis completed before signing any papers!
The team here at The Chimney Doctor is here to help you out with it all. We perform level 2 inspections for homeowners all throughout Grand Junction and its surrounding areas, and we’re ready and eager to help you out, too. Call today or reach us online to set something up with our team.
So, what exactly is the difference between a home inspector’s evaluation and a certified chimney sweep’s? Learn more below!
What You Get From a Home Inspector
When it comes to your fireplace, your home inspector will likely look things over and give you their analysis on how well the structure is holding up. Unfortunately, this doesn’t mean you’ll have all the information you need to move forward in the buying or selling process. Here’s what home inspector WILL cover:
- They’ll inspect the visible and easy-to-access areas of the fireplace/chimney.
- They’ll check the lintel (the horizontal frame above the firebox opening).
- They’ll check the damper door to see if it easily opens and closes (if there’s an accessible way to do so).
- They’ll inspect the cleanout doors and frames.
Basically, if you have any indication of joint separation, damper malfunctions, or damage/deterioration throughout the hearth, hearth extension, or chambers, the inspector should note that these need to be corrected. They will also note whether or not you have smoke and carbon monoxide detectors in the same room as the fireplace, and if your cleanouts aren’t made of metal or another non-combustible material.
Now, it may seem like that covers a lot, but it actually only scratches the surface. Check out the following things that a home inspector will NOT complete:
- An inspection of the flue or vent system.
- An inspection of the chimney or flue interior.
- An inspection of any fire doors or screens.
- An inspection of any seals, gaskets, or mantels.
- A test of the gas fireplace insert (if applicable).
- Whether or not pilot lights are operating correctly.
- An analysis on whether or not everything is appropriately installed.
- An inspection of automatic fuel-fed devices.
- Whether or not a chimney sweeping is needed.
- An inspection of combustion and/or make-up air devices.
- An inspection of heat-distribution assists (both gravity-controlled and fan-assisted).
- The lighting or extinguishing of any fires.
- A determination of the adequacy of the drafting components.
- The removal of any inserts, stoves or firebox components.
- A smoke test.
- The dismantling or removal of any chimney/fireplace parts.
- A NFPA standard inspection.
- A Phase I fireplace/chimney inspection.
- Video scans.
In the end, home inspectors aren’t trained or educated as intensively as CSIA-certified sweeps, and they have only a fraction of the knowledge necessary to make an accurate analysis. This means your system could pass an inspection, yet still be facing a lot of flaws, most of which will put your home and family at serious risk. (Think chimney fires, smoke back-up, carbon monoxide exposure, house fires, and more!)
What You Get From Our CSIA-Certified Team
We’re certified with the CSIA and the NFI, and we’re members of the NFPA, so you can bet our crew is equipped with all of the tools, training, and knowledge necessary to get your system where it needs to be. We fully adhere to NFPA standards when it comes to level 2 inspections, so you can bet that any damage, deterioration, or imperfections will be found out. This is vital for ensuring the wellbeing of your home and family.
We’ll do all of the things your home inspector does (check all readily accessible parts, check your damper doors, etc.), as well as inspect all accessible areas of your structure, which could include rooftops, attics, and crawl spaces. And to ensure we really get a good look at it all, we’ll snake camera equipment up into your flue to get a good look at your interior from every possible angle.
This essentially means that all those things that aren’t covered by a home inspector will be addressed by us, guaranteeing you the peace of mind you deserve as you move forward in the buying or selling process.
Turn to Us for All Your Chimney Needs
Now, inspections aren’t the only things we’re experts on. We can also handle all the things that come after that! If we notice any damages, dangerous levels of creosote, misplaced parts, or anything else out of the ordinary, we can set you up right with the services you need to get your system safer for use again.
Call today to work with our team. We’re the best around!