What You Need To Know About Chimney Inspections & Why They’re Important
We all want our chimneys to be as safe, efficient, and long-lasting as possible, but it can be hard to tell when we need to invest in repairs or a good, professional cleaning. As a result, preventable chimney fires can ignite, carbon monoxide poisoning can occur, and chimney leaks can run rampant. The Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) know just how important it is that chimney and fireplace damage and problems be dealt with early on, which is why they both recommend annual chimney inspections, regardless of how frequently the attached fireplace or stove is used. So what do you need to know about inspections?
Different chimneys have different needs at different times. For this reason, there are three different levels of chimney inspections. Level I, II, and III.
A Level I inspection is your basic inspection – great for homeowners who have kept up with cleanings and maintenance, and kept their chimneys properly capped, flashed, and crowned. These inspections can be adequate inspections for chimneys that haven’t had any changes in use, appliances, or function. Nothing will be removed during a Level I inspection – the system will simply be visually evaluated by the technician.
When chimney maintenance has seen a lapse, an appliance has changed, the fuel source has changed, a change in function has been detected, a chimney fire has occurred, or the chimney has been relined, a Level II inspection is needed. These inspections are also necessary when buying or selling your home. A Level II inspection will rely on a camera (which is snaked up or down into the chimney flue), some simple tools, and access to the attic and/or crawlspace, if possible. As with Level I inspections, no pieces of the chimney or home are removed during Level II inspections.
If Level I and II inspections fail to give us the look we need in order to resolve any problems your chimney system is experiencing or provide an accurate assessment of its condition, we may recommend a Level III inspection. These inspections can include a bit of demo work, including the removal of chimney components and even parts of nearby walls. Because of the removal and destruction involved with a Level III, it’s truly a last resort.
Don’t Forget About Your Chimney During The Winter Rush – Schedule Inspections Every Spring Or Summer
As the temperatures decline and the holidays approach, it can be easy to forget about your chimney and fireplace and the annual needs it has, regardless of fuel type. But if you schedule your annual inspection during the spring or summer, it’s one less thing to worry about. Plus, your chimney will be ready for that first fire when you are. Don’t put off inspections – reduce your risk of fire, carbon monoxide, and water damage by making inspections a priority each and every year. Call 844-338-9223 or fill out our online appointment request form today!