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Why Fireplace Repair Is a Job Only for Professionals

college station tx chimney inspectionDo you like to “tinker around” with cars or other mechanical components?  It can be a lot of fun doing your own repair and maintenance work, and it can save you some money, but it’s important to have the experience and tools you need to get the job done safely and correctly.  There are some home repair projects that take the knowledge and training of a professional and should never be attempted by the homeowner.  Fireplace and chimney repair is a job only licensed professionals should undertake, and here’s why.

Various things can happen to a fireplace or chimney over the years that aren’t visible to the homeowner.  Cracks in the chimney liner or early and gradual deterioration of bricks and mortar can turn into very dangerous – and expensive – problems when left unattended.  Solving these problems requires training and understanding of how fireplace and chimney systems are built and how they operate.

But even before you start thinking about repair, you should be thinking about inspection.  A trained chimney sweep has the tools and skills to detect problems in their earliest incarnations – long before they create any kind of danger.

First inspection, then repair

As with repair, a chimney and fireplace inspection should be performed by professionals.  Some homeowners mistakenly believe that they can do a visual inspection of the outside of the chimney and look down inside it and this will tell them if something needs to be addressed.  Of course, it’s impossible for an untrained person to evaluate the condition of any part of the chimney – unless they clearly see that bricks and mortar are crumbling and falling off the roof. 

Chimney inspection is a painstaking process that involves many tasks.  Inspectors look not only for soot and creosote that needs to be cleaned but also for early signs that will lead to significant damage down the line.  A thorough inspection covers (but isn’t limited to):

·      Structure of the chimney

·      Chimney liner

·      Flashing

·      Chimney cap/crown

·      Damper

·      Firebox

The problem with unrepaired chimneys and fireplaces

A fireplace system that isn’t in proper working order can result in catastrophe.  The majority of house fires every year in America begin with a fireplace or chimney.  Improper ventilation or drafting can lead to lethal carbon monoxide spreading through the house – and many things can cause drafting issues from high levels of creosote buildup to debris and dead animals in the chimney.

When bricks and mortar begin to crack, water can get in and cause great damage.  Even small cracks can be problematic, and often these are never noticed by the homeowner until a lot of expensive deterioration has happened.

fireplace and chimney repair in houston txFortunately, none of these or other issues with chimneys and fireplaces are impossible to fix.  A skilled professional can perform a thorough inspection, during which all the problems will be found.  He or she then can make an assessment of what needs to be done to ensure that the system is safe and functional for the good of everyone in the home.

Guardian Chimney Sweep serves the greater Houston area with expert inspection, maintenance, cleaning and repair services.  It’s our job to know your fireplace and chimney better than you do – and that’s how we keep you safe.  Call us at (713) 401-2011 and tell us how we can help.