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Don’t Procrastinate! Schedule Your Chimney Services Now

Fall is the time of year for pumpkins, harvest parties, and relaxing evenings by a fireplace. Before you light your first fire of the season, schedule important chimney services to ensure it’s ready to burn safely and efficiently. A dirty or damaged chimney or fireplace may cause a dangerous fire, air quality problems, and more costly damages that you didn’t bargain for.

Why Schedule ServicesSeasoned firewood in front of a  lit fireplace

Your chimney system works every time a fire burns in the fireplace. While a fire is burning, there are hazardous gases, corrosive chemicals, soot, creosote, and particulate pollution rising up the chimney. Over time the system can become coated in soot and creosote, causing a dangerous buildup, and corrosive chemicals can damage the lining system as well as the masonry. Both the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) agree that routine chimney sweeps and annual inspections keep chimney systems at their safest and most efficient.

Chimney Sweeps – During a routine chimney sweep, a chimney professional will tarp off the area around the opening of the fireplace to protect the flooring. A high-speed dust collector will prevent soot from escaping into the home and affecting the breathable air. Using special brushes and rods, we’re able to clean away soot and creosote from the chimney, and collect it with the vacuum system. After a thorough cleaning, we’ll adjust the damper, making sure it’s installed and assembled correctly. We’ll inspect the exterior of the chimney, and finish the appointment by providing you with a detailed document of our findings, including photos if necessary, and video footage. This written evaluation may include recommended repairs.

CSIA Inspections – Although a chimney sweep includes a basic inspection, your chimney may at times need a thorough inspection. A CSIA inspection is required annually, but what type of inspection you need depends on your chimney. A level one inspection is the basic inspection to schedule annually if your fireplace and chimney hasn’t been changed or presented a problem in the last 12 months. If there has been changes or damage to your system or the sale or transfer of property, you need a level two inspection. A level two inspection includes all readily accessible portions of the system (the same as a level one inspection) in addition to hidden portions that are accessed by doors, such as in attics or basements. If a serious hazard is identified, a level three inspection is required–which may include removal of components of the chimney or the structure to access the suspected hazard.

Your CSIA inspection should include a video scan and a detailed report regarding damages and recommended repairs.

Schedule your services now, by calling Hudson Chimney, and you can rest assured that your fireplace is ready when you are this fall. Dial 904-282-4159 or contact us online.

Schedule Chimney Services Early!

It’s almost time for the first fire of the season, and you don’t want to be left out in the cold. Make sure your chimney system is ready when you are scheduling your chimney services early. Lighting a fire in a dirty or damaged chimney can be a recipe for disaster. It can put your family at risk, lower the value of your home, and cost you dearly in repairs and damages.

Beat the Fall RushSchedule Chimney Services Early! - Jacksonville FL - Hudson Chimney

When you schedule early, you can avoid the fall rush and make sure you’re on the books with your preferred company and technician. If you wait, you may end up waiting longer than expected as chimney professionals stay busy during the Fall Rush–the period between October and January. During this time chimney sweeps are busy with routine services, repairs, and installations. Don’t risk lighting a fire in a dangerous or dirty chimney. Don’t miss out on using your fireplace this fall. Don’t wait; schedule chimney services early.

A Clean Chimney

When your chimney was out of use this summer it may have become home to rodents or wildlife. During the summer, humidity or precipitation might have mixed with the creosote and soot to create a corrosive material on the liner. This material left inside the chimney can lead to odors, a drop in efficiency, and even dangerous buildup. There may be a dangerous buildup that becomes an obstruction. The only way to ensure your chimney system is clean and will work efficiently and properly is to schedule a sweep before fall. Schedule a Hudson chimney sweep and you can rest assured that our courteous and knowledgeable technicians will leave your chimney in the best shape possible, safer and more efficient than ever.

Annual Inspections

Like chimney sweeps, inspections are an opportunity for a professional to see your system and recognize a problem that a homeowner will miss. During an inspection, a professional will assess your entire system and you’ll get a clean bill of health, a repair recommendation, and even documentation for your insurance or realtor. This annual appointment is one of the most important for your home. Have it done now, and you’ll have time for necessary repairs before fall.

Repairs

Schedule repairs as soon as you are aware of a problem. If there is masonry damage, missing parts, or any other problems, have it addressed before burn season. If your chimney has cracked, crumbled or falling masonry, a professional should repair it through a process of tuckpointing. A chimney leak should be diagnosed and repaired before winter to avoid the freeze/thaw cycle–whether the flashing or cap needs replaced, crown needs repairs, or the whole chimney needs to be waterproofed. We can repair it before winter when you schedule early.

Call Hudson Chimney at 904-282-4159 or contact us online so that you can schedule early and rest assured that your fireplace will be ready for a fire this fall.

The Top 5 Chimney Killers

The chimney is made to last a lifetime, or at least the life of your home! However, if a chimney is constructed properly, components installed properly, and the correct materials are used, it won’t be able to last a long time. So why do you need regular chimney sweepings, anyway? It can save you time and money in the future, and it can even save your life. There are five things that can turn your chimney into a disaster, but all of these factors are preventable and the dangers caused by them are easily avoidable.

Water

The Top 5 Chimney Killers - Jacksonville FL - Hudson ChimneyYou cannot control the weather, but you can prevent water from entering your chimney system. When water penetrates your chimney system, it damages it from the inside out, it can cause the following damages: rusted parts, damaged structure, ruined furniture, rooms, and decor, stained masonry, and more. Water in the system cause your chimney to drop its efficiency and raises risks for potential dangers. It also cause you to burn more wood, resulting in a smoky fireplace, allow mold to grow, and cause odors.

Prevent chimney leaks by making sure your chimney is safe. Certain parts need to be protected to keep water out, this include the cap, crown, and flashing. Additionally, ask a Hudson Chimney expert about waterproofing services today. We use ChimneySaver’s Water Repellent to keep water from getting in, this is the best solution against water damages.

Amateur Work

Only a professional knows the ins and outs of comprehensive chimney care. They’re certified through classroom and field training. They also  adhere to local and federal safety codes, and they have experience with all types of fire appliances. Hiring an amateur can result in dangerous hazards and costly repairs down the road. Instead, you should find a local CSIA-certified chimney sweep to take care of all your chimney needs. You should also read reviews and hire a professional who is qualified. Membership in chimney sweep guilds are a bonus, check out Hudson Chimney’s credentials here.

Environment Damage

Storms, earthquakes, tornadoes, and fires can cause some serious damage to the structure of your chimney. These can all cause your chimney to work less efficiently. The damage can be minor shifted parts or serious like leaning or spalling. The best thing to do for your chimney after a strong storm or natural occurrences is to visually inspect it. If you find damage, call a professional for a thorough inspection right away.

Freeze/Thaw Cycle

Water damage get worse during freezing temperatures. The freeze/thaw cycle is the process in which water penetrates and fills cracks in the masonry, freezes and expands, breaking apart the masonry, then melts again, moving further into the masonry to repeat the process. You should have your chimney system inspected annually, especially before winter, so that cracks and voids in the masonry are repaired. You should also invest in chimney waterproofing to prevent the freeze/thaw cycle and water penetration!

Neglect

The biggest threat to your chimney system is neglect. A chimney that is cleaned and inspected regularly is safe and more efficient. These services keep your chimney working safely and properly, save you money, prevent damage, and lengthen the life of your chimney system.

It’s time to really invest in your chimney and fireplace system, especially if you want your system to last a long time. Call Hudson Chimney at 904-282-4159 and schedule services today!

Is Your Chimney Ready for Use?

With fall comes pumpkin spice coffee, ghouls and goblins, and relaxing by the fireplace. Even in warmer climates, a fireplace is a favorite home upgrade, making a room cozier, creating the perfect photo backdrop, and even supplementing the heat bills. You can benefit a lot from a fireplace, but is your fireplace ready for use? Lighting a fire in a dirty or unsafe fireplace is a bad idea and can put you at risk.

Chimney Sweeping

Is Your Chimney Ready for Use - Jacksonville FL - Hudson ChimneyIf you haven’t had a chimney sweep since last winter, your chimney is not ready for use. Every time you burn a fire in the fireplace, soot and creosote are deposited in the chimney interior. Additionally, while sitting there this summer, your chimney could have become home to critters or birds. Storms is another major factor, as it might have damaged the mortar, cap, or flashing to allow debris into your chimney.

There is no way to identify damage unless you hire a professional to come check it out. A certified chimney sweep knows what to look for, and they are have lots of experiences with chimneys and fireplaces. A standard chimney sweeping includes a thorough cleaning from top to bottom and a visible inspection of the exterior.

Chimney Inspections

Both the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recommend to get your chimney cleaned regularly and inspected annually. A CSIA inspection is a thorough assessment of all accessible portions of the chimney system. Chimney systems that have been changed, used differently, or have sustained damage require a level two inspection. This includes a video scan. A level two inspection is also required when a property is sold or transferred.

Repairs and Prevention

Scheduling your chimney sweep and inspection now gives you plenty of time to make necessary repairs or changes before fall arrives. If your chimney professional identifies damage, big or small, it can be repaired now to avoid more damage. Waiting to repair masonry or replace missing or damaged parts allow water to enter your system to cause much more costly repairs.

At Hudson Chimney, we not only repair chimneys and fireplaces, but we can also waterproof your masonry. Our technicians can apply ChimneySaver’s Water Repellent, which protects the masonry from water penetration while still allowing heat and vapors out. This product is 100% vapor permeable, and this will not affect the look of the masonry. It also works for ten years.

If you’re not sure whether your fireplace and chimney are ready to use, call the professionals to check it out before taking a chance. Call Hudson Chimney at 904-282-4159 and get on our schedule now.

Proudly Serving Jacksonville Since 1979

Jacksonville, Florida is known for many things, especially the climate and wildlife. Despite mild temperatures, many homeowners prefer to have in their home a fireplace and chimney. This helps to lower utility bills during seasonal transitions and also adds to the ambiance and decor of the home. At Hudson Chimney, we understand the magic that transforms a home when a fire is lit in a beautiful hearth. We also know the importance of maintaining fireplaces and chimneys to keep them safe and efficient. We make it our priority to keep our neighbors and families in Jacksonville safe season after season.Proudly Serving Jacksonvile - Jacksonville FL - Hudson Chimney

Why Choose Hudson Chimney

In over 20 years, Hudson Chimney has serviced countless families, businesses, and contractors, bringing safe fire appliances into residential and business spaces in and around Jacksonville. Located in Middleburg, Florida, we’re located in the heart of our service area and are well-versed in local and state fire and safety regulations. When we come into your community and your home, we treat you as neighbors. We live and work in the area, and it’s our goal that residential fires become a thing of the past for our communities.

We are certified through the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA), Independent Safety Commission (ISC), C-DET, and members of the National Chimney Sweep Guild (NCSG), Georgia Chimney Sweep Guild (GCSG), and the Florida Guild of Professional Chimney Sweeps (FGPCS) of which owner Mark Hudson is President and Founder. At Hudson Chimney, education is a valuable asset and ongoing experience. When you choose Hudson Chimney, you will get a professional with the training and experience necessary to complete the job, as well as the backing of an established, licensed, and certified company.

Comprehensive Chimney Care for Jacksonville

In order to offer the best services to our service area in Jacksonville, Florida and surrounding communities, we strive to have certified technicians on staff who are experienced and formally trained. We offer preventative chimney maintenance year round, as well as chimney leak repairs, masonry repairs, routine maintenance, installations, parts replacements, and more.

Hudson’s Service Area

Though we serve a large area in Northeast Florida, there are certain cities and towns where we work every day, including:
Middleburg
Orange Park
Green Cove Springs
Saint Johns
Saint Augustine
Jacksonville Beach
Neptune Beach
Atlantic Beach
Ponte Vedra Beach
Penney Farms
Macclenny
Baldwin
Gainesville
Melrose
Keystone Heights
Starke
Palatka
Crescent City
Welaka
Fort White
Hawthorne
Palm Coast
Lake Butler

If you reside in any of these cities and would like to find a new chimney sweep company for all of your chimney needs, give Hudson Chimney a call today at 904-282-4159. If you don’t see your city name, or your zip code here, we may be able to work with you when you call to speak with a chimney expert.

You can also contact us online with this online form.

Don’t Delay! Have Your Chimney Swept Now to Beat the Fall Rush!

Despite what you may think about summer, it may be the best time to think about your chimney system. In fact, summer is the best time to have chimney work done! This includes installations, conversions, repairs, and routine maintenance. Your chimney requires certain preventive services in order to continue to work safely and efficiently year after year. Your chimney should be swept–and when you schedule during the summer, you beat the fall rush.Chimney Swept Before the Fall Rush - Jacksonville FL - Hudson Chimney

The Fall Rush

The period that occurs every year between October and January is called the fall rush. This is the time that chimney professionals are busy with emergency calls, repairs, and installations. If you wait until fall to schedule your chimney sweep, you may not get the desired appointment time, the technician you want, or even the company you trust. If it comes to waiting for an appointment time, many homeowners may even take the risk and use a fireplace that hasn’t been swept or inspected. This can put the family at risk and create bad habits that cause damage to the system. Schedule now, and avoid the fall rush altogether.

Why Schedule a Sweep

Chimney sweeps are one of two very important appointments that continuously keep your chimney system working for you. According to the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) and the National Fire Prevention Association (NFPA), routine chimney sweeps and annual chimney inspections keep the chimney system safe and efficient year after year. Fortunately, many chimney sweep companies offer a chimney sweep that includes an inspection. Hudson Chimney offers chimney sweeps that include overall assessments year-round, and we encourage our customers to schedule during the summer.

What to Expect

When you schedule a chimney sweep with Hudson Chimney, you are guaranteed the best courtesy and care to accompany your chimney work. Our first priority is the safety of our customers in and around Jacksonville. We hope to accomplish this task, first, by offering the best services, and then by treating each job with professional courtesy and expertise.

We start by tarping the area in front of the fireplace and a high-speed vacuuming system that collects the soot from entering your living space or affecting your carpet and floor. Once ready, we use brushes and rods, hand brushes, and a vacuum to clean soot and creosote from top to bottom. The damper will be cleaned and checked for correct installation. The exterior masonry is checked, with close attention to mortar, brickwork, and crown. Your technician will document all findings and present you with photos and video footage along with a written evaluation. This inspection is for your records and should be kept in case you need it for homeowners insurance for a sale, or even for an appraisal or refinance. Most of all, when you schedule a chimney sweep, you can rest assured that your chimney system is ready for the first fire this fall.

If you’re ready to schedule your chimney sweep, and you own a home or business in the Jacksonville area, Hudson Chimney is here for you.

Call 904-282-4159 or contact us online.

Watch Out For Leaks In and Around Your Chimney

If you have a ceiling leak, your first suspicion is usually a plumbing or roofing problem. If you have a leak near a window or along a wall, you may assume there is a problem with an eave or window. However, many homeowners don’t realize that the culprit is usually the chimney, and it should be checked first. When you have a leak, instead of calling the handyman or plumber, call a professional chimney sweep. Only a CSIA-certified chimney sweep is able to assess and diagnose a chimney leak properly. Experience and training has taught us what to look for. At Hudson Chimney, we can spot a weak area before a leak occurs, and we’d much rather prevent leaks than repair after them.

Chimney Leaks

Chimney leaks can cause extreme damage to the masonry and chimney system. In fact, water can cause:

  • Rusted parts
  • Deteriorated assemblies and central heating system
  • Water stains and water damage on furniture and home
  • Rotting wood and interior of a home
  • Masonry stains
  • Cracked, deteriorated masonry
  • Collapsed hearth support
  • Chimney settlement

This type of damage caused by water in the chimney can be expensive to repair, and chimney leaks are almost 100 percent preventable. Schedule annual maintenance, including routine chimney sweeps and annual chimney inspections. In between these important appointments, there are things that you can do including getting to know your system, using it properly, and paying attention to how it works.

Signs of a Leak

Any staining on the brick indicates a leak. White staining on the masonry exterior means water is passing through the brick and leaving behind minerals on the surface. In the firebox or the interior portions of a chimney may appear darker in color due to prolonged dripping.

Odors of mildew, mold, or must means there is a leak that has been present long enough for bacteria to grow. Additionally, sounds of dripping, even if you cannot see it, means there is a problem. There shouldn’t be water in the chimney!

Any leak in the home where a chimney is present is most likely caused by a chimney leak. Water enters by way of the chimney and then runs through the house inside walls, ceilings, and floors. This leak may occur behind the scenes for days or weeks before it pools in a low area and eventually forms a leak.

Your chimney system may not seem affected during the off season, but a noticeable change in efficiency while the fire is burning is an indication of a problem, possibly a leak. The easiest way to find out is to call a professional and have it inspected. Hudson Chimney diagnoses leaky chimneys and doesn’t just repair the damage, but fixes the problem. This may include installing a new cap, flashing, crown, and waterproofing the masonry.

If you suspect a leaky chimney is the cause of your woes, it’s time to call a professional! Hudson Chimney is a phone call away at 904-282-4159!

Chimney Swifts are Coming

Spring can bring a lot of trouble for a chimney in North America. Rain can penetrate a vulnerable system and cause water damage, humidity can mingle with a dirty chimney and cause unwelcome odors, and animals can get in and damage the entire system. Sometimes there’s just nothing you can do about them.

The Uncapped Chimney

Your chimney cap is important for the safe function and protection of your chimney year-round. When a fire is burning, the cap keeps sparks from leaving the flue opening. It also can prevent wind gusts from affecting your fire, and will keep water from falling in when it’s raining. Additionally, equip your cap with a metal mesh perimeter to keep small and large animals out during the burn season and the offseason.

It’s important to prevent animal intrusion because no matter how big or small they are, they will most likely leave damage. Clawed animals will scratch the chimney liner, regardless of material. A small scratch becomes a vulnerable place that is more easily damaged by corrosive chemical byproducts of your fire. It also promotes buildup because even slight damage can slow the airflow in the flue. Animals that come into the chimney and leave on their own often leave bedding, fur, droppings, and more behind them. These materials are flammable and can affect airflow. Although many chimney professionals offer sweeps and humane animal removal, it may be that the animal cannot be removed.

Federally Protected Swifts

The Migratory Bird Treaty Act protects chimney swifts and makes it illegal to remove them or to tamper with them in any way. This means that once a swift is in your chimney system, they cannot be removed, and you cannot light a fire or do anything to harm them while they are there. They will leave on their own once nesting season is over, but this could take up to 90 days! These birds even bring their friends, resulting in swarms of birds in one chimney. Instead of dealing with the hassle of having hundreds of birds in your chimney all summer long, allowing them to possibly damage it, and leave clutter for you to deal with later, prevent them from getting in in the first place.

What You Can Do

You can prevent chimney swifts from getting in by making sure your chimney is properly capped. Small animals can also get inside through damaged or dislodged caps. In fact, anything that can climb or fly onto your roof can also climb or fly into your flue. If you don’t want the swifts in your chimney system, but want to help them find adequate and safe habitats, you can build a swift tower . These birds historically nested in hollow trees, which grew scarce as North America developed. There are some homeowners that choose to let swifts nest in their chimneys, using a chimney cap with a special design. While we don’t recommend it, we do clean up after them and make sure your chimney is ready for a fire when fall arrives.

Want to learn more about chimney swifts? Talk to an expert at Hudson Chimney and call 904-282-4159!

Spring Rains and Leaking Chimneys

Florida has been experiencing a lot of rainfall this spring. If you have a chimney system in your home, you may be noticing more than just the rainfall outside. You may also are experiencing some leaks indoors. At Hudson Chimney, our professionals are here to help you solve any leaky chimneys this spring and summer. Learn some of the causes of chimney leaks and best ways to prevent them below.

Common Causes of Leaks

Your chimney system can easily get leaks, even a minor damage can cause a leak. And a small leak can lead to major damage down the road. At Hudson Chimney, our certified technicians have plenty of experiences working with leaky chimneys. Although the causes are very easy to pin down by our professionals, we want to help you understand it. Here are some of the potential causes of a leaky chimney.

  • A flashing problem – Damaged, missing, or improperly installed flashing is a leading cause for chimney leaks. The flashing protects the vulnerable intersection of the roof and chimney, and an experienced professional must install it to avoid flashing problems later on. The flashing is usually the root issues behind any chimney leaks, so that’s why our technicians begin by checking the flashing first!
  • A missing or damaged cap – Your chimney cap protects the flue opening from weather, animal intrusion, and more. If the cap isn’t appropriate for your flue, it could be the cause leaks. If it’s installed improperly, it may break away from the flue and allow water in. This is a huge concern when summer rains are heavy, as a flue without a cap is wide open for rain to fall directly in.
  • A cracked crown – The chimney crown must be inspected and repaired. Even a well-constructed crown can become cracked due to constant exposure to the sun and weather. A chimney professional can also repair it if the damage is caught in time. This is why annual chimney inspections are incredibly important.
  • Masonry damage – Like the crown, if the masonry is damaged, even minor cracks, it will allow water to penetrate the system. Water is a nightmare for masonry and your chimney, so you must be proactive when it comes to protection your masonry against water invasion.

Prevention Against Leaky Chimneys

Proper maintenance and regular check ups of your chimney will protect you from getting a leaky chimney. By scheduling your routine chimney sweeps and annual inspections, you will be able to catch and repaired any damages before it worsens to a leak. You can protect your masonry by scheduling a professional waterproofing services. At Hudson Chimney, we trust ChimneySaver Water Repellent to protect our chimneys, especially when it comes to our friends, neighbors, and customers in and around the Jacksonville, Florida area. This vapor-permeable repellent keeps water from getting in, while still letting gas, heat, and moisture out.

Preventing a chimney leak is the best thing you can do to protect your home and family against the heavy rain and storms this summer. Call the professionals at Hudson Chimney and talk to us about waterproofing your chimney system before it’s officially summer. Give us a call at 904-282-4159 or contact us online.

Preventing Odors With Spring Cleaning

Now that spring is in full swing, you’ve probably already noticed the humidity is rising. You might also notice the odors coming from your fireplace. A dirty chimney can be stinky, and warm weather makes it worse. In order to prevent odors, add your chimney to your spring cleaning to-do list!

A Clean Chimney

After a long winter, it’s important to schedule a chimney sweep. Whether you burned a fire everyday or sporadically, it’s now time to have it cleaned. A cleaning will help keep water and moisture out this summer and  prevent odors that will threaten to run you out of house and home! Cleaning your chimney now also means that it’ll be ready for the first fire of the season when cooler temperatures arrive. While the professionals are getting a look at your chimney, they’ll also determine if there are any damaged portions of the system that may bring down efficiency, allow animals or weather inside, or cause those odors that can range from barbecue pit to smoldering carcass. Call the professionals today and let us take care of it so you don’t have to!

Hudson Chimney Cleans Chimneys

At Hudson Chimney, we take your safety and your comfort seriously. We want your chimney to work properly, your home to be pleasant, and your flue to be clean for a better burn this fall. When we come in and clean your chimney, we will use our tools to clear away all the soot and creosote that not only makes your chimney and fireplace stink, but also makes it dangerous. This same creosote is made up mostly of tar and is highly flammable. Don’t put off your chimney sweep another day!

When you schedule your chimney sweep with Hudson Chimney, a technician will arrive and section off your fireplace opening with plastic to contain the mess. We then set up a high-speed vacuum system. We use our brushes and rods to clear out debris before collecting it into the vacuuming system. Your chimney sweep will include the cleaning and adjustment of your damper, an inspection of the exterior of the masonry including the masonry and crown. You will also receive a full report once the job is done. Once you schedule the chimney sweep, you won’t need another chimney inspection for 12 months. There’s really no reason not to schedule a chimney sweep now!

Give Us A Call!

If you’re looking for a company located in Jacksonville area that has decades of experience, reputable certifications, and is able to handle all of your comprehensive chimney care, look no further than Hudson Chimney of Middleburg, Florida. We’re looking forward to your call. Schedule your spring cleaning chimney sweep now by calling 904-282-4159!

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