Warm summer weather may still be here, but before much longer cool autumn breezes will be rolling through. Follow the steps below for preparing your fireplace for winter. Then have a safe and comfortable fire season.
1. Have your chimney inspected by a chimney sweep
Having your chimney inspected by a certified chimney sweep every year is critical to maintaining a safe, efficient fireplace. Chimney sweeps will look for excessive creosote buildup, which can cause dangerous chimney fires. Equally as important, sweeps inspect your chimney for any structural problems like cracks and loose bricks. They’ll also check for obstructions like bird nests that could keep smoke from rising out the chimney. Find a certified chimney sweep in your area at CSIA.org.
2. Check your firewood
Besides making sure you have enough for winter, check that your firewood is well-seasoned. Seasoned firewood has a moisture content below 20%, which allows it to burn hot and efficiently. Firewood that has too much moisture can cause creosote buildup when it burns. Click here for tips on how to tell if firewood is seasoned.
3. Check your fireplace screen and fireplace tools
Is your fireplace screen still in good shape and do you have all the fireplace tools you need? Maybe your screen and tools have just gotten grungy and dated looking. You can dramatically change the look of your fireplace with a new screen and tools.
These three step will have you well on your way to preparing your fireplace for winter.
How do you prepare your fireplace for winter?