Tips to Prevent Chimney Fires
During the winter months, many homeowners enjoy curling up in front of a cozy fire. Unfortunately, chimney fires are a common cause of house fires during the winter.
February 18, 2020 | Home
Having a fire in your fireplace is a great way to spend a Sunday afternoon watching TV or reading a book, but be sure to follow these tips to prevent a fire from ruining your nice day.
By: Addie B.
Addie has a wide range of personal insurance experience and with her position at Acuity, has been able to specialize in homeowners insurance. On top of her homeowners insurance knowledge, Addie has a good understanding of the insurance industry in general. She focuses on the consumer allowing her to play a key role in product development. Also, she is currently working towards an Associate in General Insurance designation. In her free time Addie spends time outdoors and enjoys playing and watching sports.

Author of Home Focus

During the winter months, many homeowners enjoy curling up in front of a cozy fire. Unfortunately, chimney fires are a common cause of house fires during the winter. Whether you are using wood or natural gas, fireplace safety is important. Listed below are a few tips:

 

  1. Have your chimney inspected. An important part of preventing a chimney fire is making sure your chimney is in good condition. Fire professionals recommend regular inspections to ensure there are no structural issues.
  2. Burn seasoned wood. Use wood that has been drying for at least six months. It is also best to burn hardwood such as oak or maple. Burning wet or soft wood can result in greater creosote buildup in your fireplace and chimney.
  3. Use safe fire starters. It is better to burn clean paper or designated fire starter logs than newspaper or cardboard. Using accelerants is not a safe way to start a fire, as they are highly combustible and do not burn clean.
  4. Clean your fireplace and chimney. Regularly clean your fireplace of ash from prior fires. Wait until the ash is cool and be sure to store in a fire-safe container such as a metal bucket. It is also important to have your chimney cleaned to remove any creosote buildup that may be accumulating.
  5. Proper ventilation. Proper ventilation is important to ensure smoke is drawn out of the house through the chimney. Insufficient airflow can result in additional creosote buildup as well as dangers of carbon monoxide in the home.

 

While natural gas fireplaces require a bit less maintenance than their wood-burning counterparts, fireplace safety should still be practiced. To make sure your gas fireplace is operating safely, chimney inspections and proper ventilation should be part of your routine maintenance plan.

 

References:

https://www.csia.org/chimneyfires.html

https://www.csia.org/gas_fireplace.html

https://www.ctsweep.com/blog/top-sweep-stories/chimney-fires-can-be-prevented/

https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2016-02/documents/wood_smoke_awareness_kit.pdf

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4kvQX_8Wf-0

https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/ornamental/trees/tgen/hardwood-tree-information.htm

By: Addie B.
Addie has a wide range of personal insurance experience and with her position at Acuity, has been able to specialize in homeowners insurance. On top of her homeowners insurance knowledge, Addie has a good understanding of the insurance industry in general. She focuses on the consumer allowing her to play a key role in product development. Also, she is currently working towards an Associate in General Insurance designation. In her free time Addie spends time outdoors and enjoys playing and watching sports.

Author of Home Focus