Having your fireplace and chimney inspected might seem like something you can put off for another day, but there are very real dangers that can occur when you don’t get this done regularly — like your home catching on fire! At minimum, you need an annual inspection done for your fireplace and chimney, although cleaning can be done on an as-needed basis.
Why is this so important? Here are a few reasons.
Keep Smoke Out of Your Home
Blockages can occur in chimneys for a variety of reasons. Over time your chimney can build up debris. This comes from the creosote left over from a burning fire. It can also occur when animals set up nests in your chimney after you haven’t used it for a while. That debris can create a back-up so that when you light a fire, the smoke comes back down the chimney into your home. Not only is it dirty and smelly, but it can also be toxic to you and your family.
Get Rid of Creosote
The second most common cause of fatalities from a house fire is when the chimney and fireplace aren’t properly maintained. One culprit of home fires is creosote. This is a natural byproduct of burning fire, but it’s toxic and dangerous. Creosote attaches to the interior of the chimney and can catch fire in intense heat. If inspections and cleanings are not done on a regular basis, that build-up can cause multiple problems, including allowing toxic fumes into your home.
Avoid Water Damage
It might seem counterintuitive, but not properly maintaining your fireplace and chimney can lead to water damage and mold. This occurs when cracks and other damage affect the chimney. Left unrepaired, rainwater can seep into your home through the cracks, leading to damage in your walls, and even mold. You might not even notice the damage right away, making an annual inspection even more important.
Prevent Denial of Future Insurance Claims
Home insurance policies do not cover damage from neglect or lack of maintenance. Not having an inspection done for your fireplace and chimney will most likely lead to damage in your home — from smoke, water, or fire. If you file a claim, it may be denied because you didn’t properly maintain this part of your home, directly leading to the damage. Regular inspections and cleanings may cost money, but it’s much less in comparison to the cost to rebuild or repair your home when your insurance claim is denied.
If you’ve never had your fireplace inspected or you can’t remember when it was last done, schedule an inspection as soon as possible. Consider not using your fireplace until you do. If you have questions about your home insurance coverage in the event of a fire, contact Charlotte Insurance. We can help you understand your policy and provide a free quote for a new one.