Chimney Fires! Some tips on how to avoid them!
Chimney fires and how to avoid them OR
“Ways to keep the fire you want from starting the fire you don’t!
Here are some tips on avoiding a chimney fire whether using a fireplace OR a wood stove!
1) Have your fireplace or stove chimney inspected annually by a qualified (preferably a CSIA Certified) professional and swept if necessary.
2) Burn only “seasoned” or cured wood! The moisture content of the wood is more important than if it is a “hardwood” or a “softwood” ( I burn “softwood” all the time. But it’s seasoned softwood!)
3) Build smaller “hotter” fires that burn more completely and produce less smoke.
4) Never burn cardboard, wrapping paper or the Christmas tree! These items tend to “flare up” when burned and may spark off a chimney fire. There are more chimney fire related home structure fires on Christmas Day than any other day of the year!
5) When using a stove, install a stovepipe or “probe” style thermometer. This type of thermometer is highly accurate and will help you monitor your “true” burning temperature! If needed, this helps to adjust your burning habits to maintain proper temperatures to avoid excessive creosote buildup.
6) If using a wood stove, clean and inspect the catalytic combuster(if applicable.) A cracked or broken catalytic combuster can not perform as required and leads to MORE smoke particulates entering the atmosphere!