Mechanical troubles with fireplaces: dampers

Corrosion and debris are the most common causes of stuck dampers. Your chimney professional can lubricate the moving parts and make adjustments, or recommend a new damper if yours is damaged beyond repair.

How to Choose the Best Fireplace

Marge Padgitt

Homeowners have many options for gas or wood-burning fireplaces, but the choices can be somewhat confusing if all the facts aren’t readily available. The internet can be a good source for research, but there are a lot of sites that don’t provide accurate or thorough information so making a choice can be difficult.

What You Need to Know About Steel Chimney Liners

Marge Padgitt

After a chimney sweep has inspected a chimney he/she may find damages to the original liner due to exposure to rain and acidic flue gasses, chimney fire, or other cause and recommend a new chimney liner. Chimney contractors often prefer to use steel flue liners due to their relative ease of installation compared to tile liner installation, and the fact that unlike vitreous clay tile flue liners, stainless steel chimney liners are a U.L. listed product with a warranty by the manufacturer.

Should I have my fireplace and woodstove cleaned now?

Marge Padgitt

All flues should be swept in the early spring at the end of the wood-burning season in order to remove smelly, flammable creosote that can cause damage to chimneys during months the chimney is not used.

Fix my fireplace so that it works again

Contributing Author

One of the most common questions I’m asked when on a service call comes from a homeowner who would just like to his fireplace without any problems.
Many homeowners have fireplaces that have never worked or that have been made inoperable over the years due to chimney fires, wood stove installations or changes in the interior or exterior of their homes.

Annual Safety Inspections for Your Chimney

Chad Murray

An annual safety inspection should be performed on every fireplace before its first fire of the year. Call a trained chimney professional who knows all the components of a chimney and fireplace to perform a visual inspection.

Burn local wood


Firewood can be an economical and environmentally responsible fuel for heating your home.  Stored solar energy in the form of firewood has historically been humankind’s most available and commonly used fuel.  Nothing beats the warmth of a wood fire on a cold winter’s eve. To help halt the spread of invasive, tree damaging insects, acquire your firewood from local sources.  Firewood cut from fresh trees or trees recently infested by insects and disease can contribute to the spread of pests to nearby healthy trees.  Transportation of invasive insects through firewood enables them to spread and infest more trees.

Odors: woodstove, fireplace, chimney

Todd Woofenden

There are several types of odors that could detract from your enjoyment of the wood stove. Creosote has a very strong, acrid odor, generally much worse in wet weather or in the summertime when the chimney is less effective in drawing the odor up the chimney.

Smoky Fireplaces

Ron Herman

There have been numerous “Smoke Signals” lately regarding smoky fireplaces. This is understandable as we were leading up to the Christmas time Holidays. Many picture their families gathered together in their homes around the crackling fireplace. Everyone is happily sharing their treasured family stories, some funny, some bringing tears to their eyes of loved ones who have passed on.


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.

Mechanical troubles with fireplaces: fireplace doors

Todd Woofenden

A good set of fireplace doors is a highly- recommended accessory for saving heat and optimizing your enjoyment of the fireplace. But if the doors are damaged, improperly installed, or out of adjustment, they can be frustrating. Your chimney professional can fix most fireplace door problems.

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Smoke Signals: Have a question about your chimney?