Winter and Your Chimney

Dec 17, 2018

We’ve certainly had an interesting winter this year and it isn’t over yet. You’re probably enjoying your fireplace and if you were smart, you had your fireplace and chimney inspected by professionals before the winter season arrived. But what many people don’t realize is that throughout the winter, particularly if there are heavy snows, below freezing temperatures or temperature swings, you have to watch your chimney.

Your chimney stands proudly like a soldier, rising out of your roof and funneling smoke to the outside. What you probably don’t consider is the effect your weather can have on your chimney and ultimately, the safety of your home.

When the winter weather comes, and snow builds up on your roof, you should always take some time to look up at that grand chimney and give it a good once over. But what do you look for, you may ask? Here’s the answer.

If there has been snow and temperatures have remained cold enough for that snow to remain on your roof, make sure that it isn’t blocking your chimney. A chimney blocked by snow can cause carbon monoxide to build up in your home when you light that roaring fire. Just because the smoke isn’t billowing into your living room doesn’t mean that there isn’t some blockage that can cause you a problem. If you suspect that the chimney isn’t completely free of snow, please call a professional to check it out.

One way to help protect your chimney from any kind of blockage, whether it’s birds, leaves or snow, is to have a chimney cap installed. These little devices work wonders to help keep your chimney free of debris that could otherwise cause costly repairs. Remember that a blocked chimney can also affect your home’s heating supply, and not in a good way.

If you had a fair amount of snow, or if the temperatures remained at freezing for some time, remember that your chimney is constructed of brick and mortar that expands and contracts with the weather. Pay close attention to your chimney’s structure and call a professional if you suspect that damage may have occurred.

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