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Common Summer Chimney Issues

Most homeowners think about chimney repairs in the fall or winter — right before it’s time to start using their fireplace. And, because it’s summer and not currently in use, this is the ideal time to schedule a chimney cleaning and inspection. Each Dubuque Fireplace & Patio technician is trained to spot many common summer chimney issues as well as those less common problems also. 

Structure/exterior damage

Chimney Repairs in Platteville WIThe first common chimney issue can concern its structure. This includes everything from deteriorating brick and mortar to a leaning chimney to problems with your crown. Depending on the extent of your chimney’s structural damage, a quick visual inspection can help pinpoint the necessary repairs.

On the other hand, some issues can only be identified by a trained professional, which is why you should schedule an inspection at the end of each season.

Unexplainable odors 

The warm summer sun can make unpleasant odors lurking in your chimney more noticeable and smelly. What causes chimney odors? It depends. Sometimes, they can be a result of creosote build-up. In other cases, there may be animals, decomposing leaves, or moisture within the flue. 

Scheduling a regular chimney cleaning during the summer is a great way to stay on top of any unwanted intrusions leading to troublesome odors drifting into your home.

Creosote buildup

We just mentioned creosote build-up, so let’s unpack that a bit further. A good, HVAC best practice is to replace your furnace or AC filter at the beginning of each season. This helps to ensure the efficient and safe operation of your HVAC system. 

The same can be said for your chimney. Creosote, which is a black, sticky byproduct of smoke from burning firewood, will eventually form a thick layer of build-up on the inside of your chimney. 

There are several reasons to remove this each season — at a minimum, once a year. As already mentioned, creosote build-up can lead to unwanted chimney odors. In some cases, it can reduce your chimney’s efficiency. On a more serious note, creosote can lead to a chimney fire.

Summer starting doesn’t cause creosote to form. Rather, the summer months are the best time to remove it from your chimney from wintertime usage.


Your chimney needs proper airflow to effectively direct the smoke away from your home. If your chimney lacks a cap, wildlife inhabitants can take up residence in it. This can lead to several problems, including odors (both from waste and if they get stuck) as well as blockages that prevent smoke and gases from properly exiting your flue.

Storm damage

Summer storms bring high winds, massive downpours, and sometimes more severe weather such as hail and tornadoes. 

Various types of debris can end up in your chimney during these events. In addition, improperly installed or unsecured chimney components can become damaged or dislodged completely during a strong storm. Your technician will find these issues and remove, repair, or replace them so that the inner workings of your chimney remain safe and secure.

Chimney Inspection Apple Canyon ILWe’ll take care of your common summer chimney issues

Everyone loves to use their chimney during the colder winter months. Don’t delay with your annual inspection. Rather, use the downtime during the summer for a sweep or inspection so that we can repair your chimney for you ASAP.

Contact Dubuque Fireplace & Patio to book your appointment today by calling 563-582-5156. Or, send us a message through our website here

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