Cooler weather is finally here. It’s time to start preparing for the holidays and thinking about how you’re going to stay warm for the next few months. A step in the right direction is getting your fireplace ready to go for the season. It’s not as simple as just turning it on and warming your toes in front of it. It’s necessary to take precautions in preparing your fireplace to ensure your safety, your loved ones, and your home. Keep reading to learn about the steps you need to take to get your chimney and fireplace ready to keep you cozy this winter!
Clean and Inspect Fireplace:
Your fireplace and chimney should be inspected and cleaned at least once a year to ensure everything is working correctly and safely. You can clean your fireplace yourself if you know what to look for, but hiring a professional chimney sweep is the wisest option. A professional will know what to look for in terms of safety hazards and clean even the hardest-to-reach places.
Purchase Seasoned Wood:
Depending on the type of fireplace you have, it’s essential to purchase the correct firewood. Most wood-burning fireplaces use seasoned firewood. Seasoned firewood means that the wood has been set out to dry for a long time so that there’s no moisture remaining on or in the wood.
Clear Area of Hazards:
Clear the area around your fireplace of anything flammable or combustible that could potentially be a hazard. This includes anything hanging over the mantle, decorations on the ground beside the fireplace, etc. Throughout the season, make sure nothing is left in a dangerous area that could possibly catch fire.
Check Smoke Alarms:
Check your smoke and carbon monoxide alarms/detectors to be sure they are in working order. Consider replacing their batteries to be on the safe side. While taking precautions to ensure your fireplace does not cause a house fire or emit harmful gases, there’s always the off chance that it could put you and your loved ones in danger. It’s better to be safe than sorry!
Cap Your Chimney:
Chimney caps help prevent moisture from the air or rain from coming into the chimney and debris and small animals. Many chimneys have a cap already installed, but if you’re unsure, contact a professional to check during cleaning and have them install one. Ensure this cap is installed or replaced before you use your fireplace and chimney for the first time for the season.