When it’s time to break out the light jacket and the long socks, that means it’s also time to get the fireplace ready for a fire. As temperatures dip and you find yourself switching your thermostat from a/c to heat, a fire could be saving you some money and helping you stay more comfortable in the home! At Northwest Fireplace and Chimney we want to help our customers stay safe and warm as soon as the fire becomes a thought this fall. What helps to keep chimneys safe is keeping them clean, and that is why we offer chimney sweeping services that sweep away soot and dangerous creosote.
What is Creosote
When organic material like firewood burns, it releases other materials such as particulate pollution, soot, and creosote. The soot is a simple carbon byproduct and particulate pollution is usually unburned wood particles. Creosote is a little more different and can be quite a bit more dangerous, however. It is made primarily of tar which is sticky and flammable. The sticky creosote flakes stick to the flue interior and as the winter goes on and fires burn on a regular basis, the flakes buildup into bigger deposits. When this creosote isn’t cleaned away, it can become a dangerous hazard.
When creosote isn’t cleaned away on a regular basis it can result in glazed, or level three creosote buildup. Creosote is considered level three when the buildup has grown into such a problem that airflow has slowed, allowing heat to affect the deposits in the flue. As the creosote becomes heated, the water molecules evaporate, leaving behind a concentrated, hardened mass of fuel (tar). This glazed creosote is not only highly flammable but is also more difficult to remove than other materials easily swept away in the chimney. Regular creosote can be brushed out of the chimney and fireplace system just like soot, but when it has reached level three buildup or glazed state, it has to be removed using a chemical product only professionals can use.
Glazed Creosote Removal in Valparaiso and Surrounding Areas
Our chimney sweeps at Northwest Fireplace and Chimney are licensed and certified professionals. We are able to purchase and use industrial-grade products that will remove your level three creosote without damaging your liner. We use liquid glazed creosote remover which brushes on easily. As the creosote absorbs the chemical it transforms the creosote into a brittle material that can be swept away and vacuumed out of the chimney. An amateur may attempt to remove glazed creosote with sharp tools or corrosive chemicals. Don’t trust your chimney system with the rest—trust it with the best. We use only appropriate tools and products to clean your chimney and care for it so that it lasts year after year.
Ask the Professionals
The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recommends routine sweeps and annual inspections for the safest and most efficient chimney systems. If your inspection identified dangerous creosote buildup, it’s time to have it removed.
Call Northwest Fireplace and Chimney at 219-413-2349 and speak with an expert today.