Checking a chimney

Chimney safety should be a concern for every homeowner. Each year, lives and property are lost due to improper care and maintenance of chimneys. You can check some parts of the chimney yourself.

Hiring a chimney professional

In checking your chimney, a chimney professional can check all of the visible components of the chimney for damage, needed maintenance, and fire safety. A chimney professional is trained to look for dangerous or questionable conditions that a homeowner could easily miss.

Why, When and How to Hire a Chimney Sweep

SNEWS

How do I find a chimney sweep? What training should a chimney sweep have? Why should I hire a chimney sweep instead of working on the chimney myself? Should a chimney sweep be certified?

What to Expect When You Have Your Chimney Swept

SNEWS

How much does it cost to clean your chimney? When to make an appointment. Will my house be a mess after the chimney sweep leaves. How to forward schedule your next appointment.

Creosote

Todd Woofenden

One of the great misunderstandings in the world of woodstoves is how creosote fits into the picture. Contrary to popular belief, creosote is not an inevitable product of wood burning. Creosote forms when wood is burned incompletely, and is an indication of improper use, poor installation, or a poor wood stove design.

Woodstove problems: poor performance

Todd Woofenden

Sometimes it seems that the stove just isn’t working as well as it used to. If there is no obvious problem, such as smoking, catalyst malfunction, etc., but it just doesn’t seem to be doing the job it used to, consider the possibilities in this article.

Woodstove problem: woodstove gaskets

Todd Woofenden

Gaskets around doors, ash pans, air intakes, or between metal panels of a wood stove are critical to proper stove performance. Leaky or missing gaskets let air in in the wrong place, fouling the burn and often severely reducing burn efficiency.

Woodstove problem: cracked or broken glass

Todd Woofenden

Under normal conditions of use, the stove glass will not crack or break. Causes of glass breakage are varied including that of improper glass installation.

Woodstove problems: warped or broken parts

Todd Woofenden

The metal plates on the inside of the stove are there to protect the outside of the stove from damage. If any of the burn plates becomes cracked or badly warped, replace it. It is a lot cheaper than replacing the whole stove down the road!

Smoky woodstove: smoky on wet days in other rooms

Todd Woofenden

Some stoves seem to work just fine except when it is wet out. If this seems to be the case, pay close attention to the weather when you have smoking problems. It is easy to confuse wind-related problems with rain-related problems.

Smoky woodstove: smoking on windy days

Todd Woofenden

Some stoves seem to work okay except on windy days, or if the wind is coming from a specific direction. Chimney height should be considered as a possible cause. We will look at this and other possible causes.

Smoky woodstove: constant or erratic smoking

Todd Woofenden

If your stove seems to smoke all the time, or erratically, consider these possibilities: undersized flue, blockages, multiple appliances connected to the same flue.

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Smoke Signals: Have a question about your chimney?