Benefits to Having a Clean Fireplace

Written by Haley Burres
Updated July 15, 2013
An annual fireplace inspection and cleaning can help reduce the risk of a fire. (Angie's List/Summer Galyan)

Keeping your fireplace clean and maintained will help you reduce the risk of fire and save on energy costs. Get tips on hiring a chimney sweep.

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While having a fireplace is a cozy way to relax after a hard day or stay warm on cold a night, it also brings with it extra work and responsibility. Maintaining your fireplace is a vital part in keeping your home and family safe, as well as keeping energy costs low.

The National Fire Protection Agency recommends a yearly fireplace inspection and cleaning. Finding a qualified chimney cleaner who is knowledgeable about fireplace safety is the first step in starting your inspection. Often, that professional will also offer repair services for anything he or she finds that could be unsafe or in poor condition. While you can clean your own chimney and fireplace, it's a dirty and laborous job.

Learning what to look for during an inspection is something that the professional is trained in, not the average homeowner. Further, a fireplace service professional is often a one-stop shop for servicing your fireplace. When hiring your professional, be sure to ask if he or she offers cleaning, inspection and repair services.

A clean fireplace should also make your home more safe. The crackling fire you enjoy produces an oil called creosote that deposits on the walls of the fireplace and chimney via the smoke on the way up and out of the house. Over time, the creosote will build up and if it becomes thick enough, it can become flammable and catch fire. Further, heavy creosote buildup can hinder the escape of carbon monoxide gas out of the home, which can be deadly.

Working together with an experienced fireplace professional can help you be sure that your home and family are safe and sound. You can enjoy your crackling fireplace and cozy atmosphere with confidence that you're not putting your family in danger.

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