When it’s time to light the first fire of the season, the last thing you want to think about is rushing to schedule important chimney and fireplace services. When you wait until the last minute to schedule your chimney sweep and inspection, you risk the Fall Rush. This is the first few weeks of burn season in which chimney sweep companies are busy. Packed schedules can make getting necessary services almost impossible. Don’t wait. Don’t procrastinate! Schedule important services now. Your chimney sweep and inspection is an investment in your future. It saves lives, property, and even money in the long-run.
The Fall Rush
Homeowners who procrastinate important maintenance for their home may end up paying for it in the future. If you depend on your fireplace, insert, or stove for supplemental heat, you cannot risk lighting it without an inspection. By lighting it before an inspection, you put your home and family at risk for fire and chimney emergencies. If you wait too long, you may miss out on the services you require at a desirable time. We don’t want our customers to choose between safety and comfort this year. We want you to be able to light your fire safely this year, and we always want to be your trusted choice. That is why we offer our expert chimney services year-round and encourage homeowners to schedule ahead of time!
Proper Maintenance = Safe Chimneys
Only those fireplace and chimney systems that are routinely cleaned and annually inspected are safest and efficient. Even the most advanced fire appliance and a properly installed chimney system will become inefficient without proper maintenance. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recommends chimney inspections and sweeps for safety and efficiency no matter how old the system is and no matter how often it is used. As a fire is burned in the hearth, creosote and soot are produced and rises up the chimney. These microscopic particles of carbon and tar cling to the sides of the flue and will eventually lead to corrosion and buildup if not removed. When creosote is allowed to buildup and overheat, the water vapors are removed and it is transformed into a hardened, highly flammable mass of “glazed creosote”. This material slows airflow through the flue and creates a serious fire hazard as dangerous temperatures heat the creosote and ignite it, resulting in a flue fire.
It isn’t just wood fires that need to be maintained annually. Gas fires don’t produce creosote, but they do produce carbon monoxide and water vapors. These can still lead to furniture and home damage and respiratory issues for the family. Carbon monoxide exposure can lead to permanent organ damage and possible death. The only way to ensure your system is working properly and safely is to schedule maintenance annually with a certified expert.
Clean Chimneys for Christmas
The chimney sweep and inspection are vital for safety for certain, but it also enriches your home and your holiday experience. When your chimney and fireplace are squeaky clean, the blaze will be beautiful and strong, the hearth will be clean of creosote and ash, and your living space will be warm and cozy. The fireplace has a special place in the holiday scene. It’s the backdrop for gift-giving, movie nights, parties, and even family photos. With a clean chimney, you won’t have to worry about a smelly living room either!
Chimney Inspections in Jacksonville
Whether you burn a fire every day or only a few times per month, you still need to have it inspected every 12 months. This keeps it working safely and identifies damages and hazards before they put your family and your home in danger. Residents in and around Jacksonville have put their trust in Hudson Chimney for over 30 years for chimney care and diagnostics. We offer level one, two, and three inspections, and our trained eyes and skilled hands know exactly where to look for problems both common and uncommon.
SCHEDULE A LEVEL ONE INSPECTION if you:
- have had no problems with your chimney system over the last year
- haven’t changed it
- plan to use it the same way for the next year as well.
SCHEDULE A LEVEL TWO INSPECTION if:
- you’ve made changes to your system
- you suspect problems with your system
- it’s been through a serious storm or natural disaster that might cause damage to your system.
A level two inspection is also required before the sale or transfer of land and includes a thorough assessment of the entire chimney interior by video surveillance equipment.
SCHEDULE A LEVEL THREE INSPECTION if:
- a hazard is suspected during a lesser level inspection.
Your technician should present a detailed report before proceeding with a level three inspection because they may require demolition and most often end in repair.
Remember, before you light your fire this fall, make sure it’s safe! Schedule your chimney sweep or inspection with Hudson Chimney today. Dial 904-282-4159.
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 Rush
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.
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.
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.
You hear about it happening to other people, but you’ve never thought that it would happen to you. An animal has made its way into your chimney! Birds, critters, or anything that can climb on your roof could get inside your chimney. Or worst, the intruders have made your chimney their home. What do you do now? We are going to learn some of the problems that comes with animals and critters invading your chimney, and how our professionals at Hudson Chimney can help get rid of this problem or preventing it from happening in the first place.
The Problems With Animal Intrusion
If your chimney cap is missing or damaged, you may end up with a animal trying to make a nest in your flue. Once inside, they may build a nest, carrying in debris that could ignite or block the flue completely. They may also leave behind a flue obstruction that might smell so foul that it could run you out of the house. If the animal does end up leaving on its own, they could still potentially leave behind nesting materials such as feathers, fur, and even droppings.
Additionally, small mammals may climb out of a chimney using their teeth and claws, scratching and damaging your flue liner. Small scratches on the surface of the liner may not seem like a big deal, but these scratches will collect creosote and soot that continues to corrode the already damaged area. This will eventually become a hazard, which could cause major issues for your masonry and put your safety at risk.
Critters are not the only thing that can make its way into your chimney flue. You may hear the chirping of birds from time to time. A bird may fly in and out of your chimney, or they may even move into your chimney completely! Chimney swifts are a species of bird that move into chimneys and nest in them.
In fact, chimney swifts naturally nest in hollow trees. When North America began to colonize, this eventually lead to more chimneys than hollow trees, so these birds adapted. Now they nest in chimneys, and if your chimney isn’t capped, they’ll be in yours too. Chimney swifts are federally protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, and they are unlawful to be removed or harmed while staying in your chimney. You may even want us to come do a humane animal removal, but this is even unlawful for us. Chimney swifts cannot be removed or tampered with. We can only wait and hope they leave on their own, which can take up to 90 days from the time they move in and nest.
Humane Animal Removal
We believe that when it comes to your chimney, you’re better safe than sorry. If you hear an animal in your chimney (even a bird), you can call us at Hudson Chimney, and we’ll determine whether the animal can be removed or not. Our process is safe for both the chimney and the animal, and shouldn’t interfere with your home at all.
If you need to schedule an appointment for animal removal, call us at 904-282-4159 today.
Your fireplace is designed to hold your fire, and your chimney is designed to vent it. These two parts of the chimney system are made to work together. When both parts work correctly, the fire should be safe and efficient. When even one part of the system falls short, efficiency drops and fire risk goes up.
Both the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) and the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) recommend routine maintenance for a safe and efficient fire. That means that your chimney should be clean, and checked annually for damage and wear. Making these appointments and caring for your chimney system in this way ensures your fireplace and chimney lasts longer, is safer for your home and family, and is easier on the environment. This low-cost preventative service can save you thousands later.
What is a CSIA Inspection?
A CSIA inspection is an annual inspection to be completed by a CSIA certified chimney sweep. There are three levels of CSIA inspection:
- Level 1 – To be completed annually when nothing has changed with the chimney system. This inspection includes all accessible portions of the chimney.
- Level 2 – To be completed if a level 1 raises concern, if a change is made to the system, or if a home is being sold or transferred. This inspection includes all accessible portions as well as those accessed through hidden areas including attics and crawlspaces.
- Level 3 – To be completed if a hazard is detected in a level 2 inspection. This inspection requires extra tools to remove components of the building, including walls and parts of the chimney if necessary.
Why Hire a Professional
By the time the average homeowner notices a problem with the chimney, the unseen damage has occurred. In some cases, devastating damages can occur inside the chimney itself, causing efficiency to drop, allowing hazardous gases and particle pollution into your home, and creating the perfect environment for a flue fire.
While you may be unaware, your fire is always coating your flue with soot and creosote. A minor chimney leak or the wrong type of wood burning in the fireplace can lead to a drop in efficiency. A drop in efficiency increases the amount of soot and creosote, leading to a buildup, and eventually a fire. Chimney leaks not only raise the risk of fire but also lead to damages to your home and even mold in the air you breathe. All of this and more can occur while you go on, unaware and in danger.
It’s our highest priority at Hudson Chimney to educate the community as well as our customers in and around Jacksonville about fire risk. Stay safe. Protect your family and your property. Hire a CSIA certified chimney expert today, and have Hudson Chimney complete your annual inspection.
This is a world where everything is low-maintenance, high-speed, made-to-order, and convenient. Due to this, it can be difficult to slow down and add to the list of to-do’s. The weather warms up and you’re finished with your spring cleaning. So, of course you don’t want to think of more work that needs to be done. It can be easy to put off your annual chimney maintenance until winter. However, there’s no good reason to put it off, and every reason to do it now!
Sweeps and Inspections Keep You Safe
Both the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recommend annual maintenance for the safest and most efficient chimney system. These appointments are the only time a certified professional will get a look at your chimney. Early detection is the key to fixing an issue or weakness in your chimney system. Any weakness can cause catastrophic damage, illness, injury, or death!
Most homeowners insurance policy agreements require routine chimney sweeps and inspections to maintain coverage. A chimney inspection is also required when a property is sold or transferred. Also, when changes are made to the system, or following a natural disaster or fire. The signature of a CSIA Certified Chimney Sweep (CCS) will be recognized and accepted by insurance, real estate, and municipal officials!
Avoid Odors, Damage, and Illness
Did you know a dirty chimney and fireplace can lead to foul odors in the summertime? Soot and creosote left in a chimney can lead to a smoky/barbecue smell. It permeates the home, especially once summer humidity mingles with the residue inside the flue. Odors of decomposing leaves, sticks, debris, and even animal droppings and dead animals themselves can also lead to foul, pungent odors in the chimney. These odors are avoidable when you schedule a chimney sweep following burn season.
Do you leave the filth inside the chimney? If so, the negative pressure of the home will lead to odors, despite any attempt to stop it. What is the most serious odor that can come from a dirty or neglected chimney? The moldy/mildew-like odor that means you have a leaky chimney. Your leak would have been diagnosed early, and repairs completed if it was inspected. Haven’t scheduled your chimney inspection and your chimney smells moldy? Call now, and avoid respiratory issues and water damage!
Avoid the Fall Rush by Scheduling Now
By scheduling your chimney maintenance now, you can avoid the fall rush. This is the time between October and January when chimney sweeps are most busy. At this time it can be hard to get your desired appointment time, your usual technician, and you may even be left in the cold waiting for your service appointment. Schedule your chimney sweep and inspection now and you will have time to make necessary repairs, upgrades, and installations before the fall!
Hudson Chimney is Jacksonville’s #1 chimney sweep company for over 30 years, and we put our customers first every time. To find out about our chimney sweep services and inspections, contact Hudson Chimney today.