Posted on: 20 September 2015
Have you recently moved into a new home? Is this the first time you've owned a house with a fireplace? While your fireplace and chimney may look okay and the home inspector may not have mentioned any issues, that's no guarantee that the chimney is in top condition. Here are some signs that you may be in need of a chimney repair or cleaning:
Debris in the fireplace: If you see leaves and similar debris in your fireplace after a storm, this may be a sign that your chimney cap has been knocked loose and needs to be replaced. If plant debris can get down the chimney, chances are that an animal can also enter and either begin building a nest or get stuck in the fireplace and cause havoc. If you see black flakes inside the chimney after using it, you could have heavy creosote build up that needs to be cleaned out. Finally, small pieces of brick or mortar are a sign that you need immediate chimney repair. Over time, cycles of heat and cold can stress the masonry in your fireplace, creating cracks and loosening bricks. Mortar debris can be a sign that your chimney is in danger of collapsing as a result of this weakening.
Unidentifiable smells: Your house may have started out smelling perfectly normal, giving you no cause for concern. But if your house has recently started smelling strange, despite your best efforts at cleaning, you may need to turn your attention to the fireplace. It could be that a small bird or mammal has become trapped and has then expired up in the chimney, leaving malodorous remains. Another possibility is a dangerous buildup of creosote. Creosote has a strong smell, but can be difficult to identify if you aren't familiar with its scent. If the creosote is not removed in a timely fashion, you could eventually have a chimney fire and may incur a steep chimney repair bill.
Wall near the fireplace looks strange: In an ideal situation, the walls next to and around your chimney should be in identical condition. If the paint or wallpaper is starting to peel or bubble while the rest of the room is intact, this is a sign that the insulating properties of your chimney are starting to fail. If you have a cement or clay chimney liner, it may be starting to crack and crumble. A chimney repair company can take a look and tell you exactly what needs to be done for your chimney to be functional once again.
For a thorough chimney inspection, talk with a company like Excel Chimney & Fireplace Service today.Share