6 Steps to Close a Fireplace for Spring & Summer
After enjoying cozy fires all winter, it’s time to close your fireplace for spring and summer. Spring cleaning won’t be complete if your fireplace is still occupied by burned logs and the flue has excess creosote deposits. If you have a gas fireplace, you may be wondering whether to turn the pilot light off. Below are some tips from the pros on how to close your wood or gas fireplace for the off season.
1 – Eliminate Fireplace Odors
You may enjoy the aroma of burning wood in winter, but lingering smells from a neglected fireplace and chimney have no appeal. Cleaning is needed for both fireplace and chimney. If you simply ignore them, the sooty components that remain will emit unpleasant odors as the weather heats up.
Contact chimney professionals in your area and schedule chimney cleaning. Qualified chimney technicians have the tools to do a thorough job. As they finish the work, a special HEPA soot vacuum is used to protect the home from toxic substances that might otherwise make their way into the air in your home.
2 – Schedule an Inspection
Chimney professionals are also needed for an annual chimney inspection. Leading fire safety experts agree that a chimney inspection should be performed annually on any fireplace in use. Chimneys are vulnerable to
damage caused by moisture, and the moisture can get into the chimney system in various ways.
With an annual chimney inspection, you have a professional trained to identify signs of chimney leaks and masonry damage. The sooner you catch problems and have them repaired, the better for your household budget. Serious damage costs much more than when a problem is resolved before a snowball-type effect occurs.
3 – Make Repairs and Upgrades
If chimney damage has been identified during a chimney inspection in spring or summer, you have more time to have the damage repaired before winter. Any upgrades you want to make to your fireplace are best to schedule in spring or summer, as well. The best chimney professionals are in high demand during cold months. You are in a better position to negotiate a lower price tag on fireplace upgrades and remodels in spring and summer.
4 – Keep Animals and Rain Out
No time of year is a good time to deal with animals in the chimney. The reality is that animals such as birds, racoons, snakes, and others will crawl into a chimney if they can. To keep animals out, a chimney cap with mesh will do the job. If you don’t have a chimney chase cover or chimney cap, don’t wait until winter to have one installed. Anytime it rains, water can pour into your chimney unless you have a chimney cap in place. Moisture is enemy number one to a chimney. Don’t delay in making sure you have a chimney cap installed, repaired, or replaced as needed to keep water and animals out.
5 – Close the Damper
The air your HVAC system cools in summer could go up the chimney, much like it’s an open window, if the damper isn’t closed or doesn’t close and seal properly. Glass doors on the fireplace provide an additional barrier to prevent an unwanted exchange of air.
6 – Turn off the Pilot Light
There are four good reasons to turn off the pilot light to your gas fireplace in spring and summer:
1. Save money, since gas for a pilot light alone can cost up to $25 monthly.
2. While you’re trying to keep your home cool in spring and summer, a pilot light will generate a small amount of heat. This is another unnecessary drain on your pocketbook, since the pilot lighting can be the reason your central cooling has to stay on a bit longer to reach the desired temperature.
3. Eliminating any active flames that aren’t needed is simply a good measure in safety.
4. A pilot light creates sulfur build-up over time, which becomes a film on the fireplace’s glass doors. It can become necessary to do additional cleaning of the glass doors, to prevent the film of sulfur from etching into the glass. It’s less hassle to turn off the pilot light in the fireplace.
Contact Fireplace & Chimney Experts
The trained, experienced chimney technicians at Dubuque Fireplace & Patio in Dubuque, IA, are ready to help you close your fireplace and chimney for spring and summer. Contact the friendly experts at Dubuque Fireplace & Patio today. If you live closer to Highland, WI, contact Chimney Specialists Inc., our sister store. Expect quality service with either of our top-notch chimney services companies.
Dubuque Fireplace & Patio
925 Century Drive, Dubuque, Iowa
Phone – (563) 582-5156
Chimney Specialists Inc.
869 Main Street, Highland, WI
Phone – (608) 929-4887 / Toll Free (800) 395-6660