The Do's and Don'ts of Fireplace Maintenance
There's nothing better than getting cozy in the living room after a big family meal and starting up the fireplace. However, to properly enjoy a warm fire during the wintertime, it's important to ensure that proper maintenance and safety measures are followed. When it comes to stacking and chopping wood, getting that fire going and putting it out, there are some important do's and don'ts to keep in mind.
The Do's and Don'ts
- Do perform annual maintenance checks of heating systems one month before you plan to turn them on.
- Do clean the firebox at least once a week during the months it is being used, but be sure to keep a small amount of ash in for insulation purposes.
- Do have a professional chimney inspector inspect your flue and chimney each year.
- Don't use a vacuum to clean up ash.
- Do make sure that all smoke detectors in your home are working.
- Do keep a fire extinguisher close by.
- Don't leave any books, blankets, papers or other flammable objects near the fireplace.
- Do use a fireplace gate.
- Don't leave the fire screen open when fire is in use.
- Don't burn garbage in your home fire place.
- Don't allow small children or pets near the fireplace unattended.
- Don't use gasoline to start a fire in your home fireplace.
- Do make sure that the fire is completely extinguished before leaving your home or going to bed.
How to Start A Safe Fire
Starting a safe fire is easy to do. Begin by crumbling newspaper or other plain paper and setting it on the grate inside of your fireplace. On top of that, add kindling. Once the fireplace damper has been opened fully, light the paper. After it has begun to burn brightly, add your firewood and shut the fire screen. Then, sit back on the couch with your loved ones and watch the embers dance while you soak up their warmth.