Nothing says holidays like curling up near a warm fire to read a book or hang Christmas stockings! A home fireplace becomes the center of holiday celebrations and a gathering point for family and friends.
To keep the holidays cozy, safe and accident-free, you need to prep your fireplace before have your first holiday fire.
Here are 4 ways to prep your fireplace and get it ready for the holiday season!
1. Clean Your Chimney
According to the The National Fire Protection Association, you should have your chimney cleaned at least once a year. Cleaning removes dust and debris and prevents sooty build-up that can lead to fires. In fact, creosote in your chimney actually can catch fire from sparks flying upward!
2. Check For Damages
Using a flashlight or headlamp, check the interior of the fireplace for cracks, fissures or any abnormalities. Things such as loose bricks, water damage or missing mortar can increase the risk of fire.
3. Cap the Chimney/Inspect the Damper
Your chimney should already have a cap. A cap prevents rodents, leaves, rain, and debris from getting stuck and preventing proper air flow. If your cap is damaged, replace it with a new one. A good rule is to check the cap when you schedule a cleaning. When checking the cap be sure to look for and remove (safely!) nests, leaves, branches, and leaves. A damper regulates air flow in the chimney. It is important that a damper works properly to prevent smoke in-house or a chimney fire. Test it by making sure it opens, closes and seals properly.
4. Purchase a Guard
It is essential to have a guard that prevents sparks from shooting into the living area. Measure the fireplace to ensure you have one that is the correct size. A guard should cover the entire opening of your fireplace to serve it's purpose. If you already have a guard, then make sure the guard is clean and free of build up.
Have questions about fireplace prep or need help cleaning up from a fire?
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