If you have a chimney, then you need to be on guard for problems that can wreck havoc on your home. Wood-burning stoves, fireplaces, and many oil furnaces utilize a chimney. There are problems that are apparent to the naked eye as well as problems that are hidden inside of the chimney.

Here are the main problems with your chimney that you need to look out for.

Creosote

This is an issue for people who use wood-burning stoves. Wood-burning stoves are really popular because they provide great atmosphere and also help you save money on your oil bill. However, one issue with wood-burning stoves is that the chimneys tend to develops creosote. This is a big issue. If it is left untreated, it can cause a fire.

Creosote is formed from burning wood. It is soot that attaches itself to the inside of the chimney. You won't see because it occurs inside the chimney. The problem with creosote is that it is flammable. This means that it can catch fire. This is what causes chimney fires. Sometimes these fires consume the entire home. Consider the scenario where you set up a nice warm fire and then go to sleep. If the chimney is loaded with creosote, then you have a potentially fatal situation. You should schedule a cleaning at least once a year.

The Chimney Is Falling Away From House

This is a very serious problem. If you have a brick or concrete chimney, rather then a steel chimney, than you should be concerned about tilt. A concrete or brick chimney might end up pulling away from the house. This requires immediate attention. If the problem is not addressed, dangerous fumes might enter the house, or the chimney might even fall. You should contact a specialist to analyze the situation.

Chimney Bricks Are Getting  Loose

Just because your chimney is standing straight and it has been cleaned of creosote, it doesn't mean you can rest easy.  Sometimes the structural integrity of the house can cause problems. Other times the problem is located in the chimney itself. If the mortar work is not up to snuff, then there can be problems.

A major issue to be on the lookout for is cracked or damaged chimney bricks. These cracks can undermine the entire structure. If you spot any cracks, it is important to contact a professional like Steve's Masonry Service to fix the issue. The old mortar needs to be removed and new mortar needs to be used. This is a delicate job that requires a mason who is skilled at repair work.

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