A fire naturally produces smoke. However, there is no good reason that it should be smoking anyplace other than your chimney. The chimney is designed to vent all of the harmful byproducts of the fire up and out of the house. This protects your family from health hazards and unpleasantness of a smoky house. The chimney can only work correctly when a draft is present and strong enough to push the hot air up the chimney. This is only possible when the chimney is in tip-top shape.
Five Reasons Your Fireplace is Smoky
- Your chimney’s draft and flow is compromised by another household draft.
Other household appliances can compete with your chimney’s draft, pulling air from the fireplace instead of letting it rise as it’s supposed to.
- Your newly built or remodeled house is too tight and doesn’t allow air flow.
When air escapes from the chimney, it needs to be replaced in the house. You can crack a window to let the pressure in the house to balance. This allows the draft needed for the smoke to escape up the chimney.
- Your chimney flue is obstructed by creosote buildup or other debris and prevents air flow.
This can cause the air to stall in the chimney. With nowhere to go, it falls back into the fireplace and into your house.
- You’re burning the wrong wood.
If your wood is not properly seasoned it can burn incompletely and produce more smoke than otherwise.
- Your chimney is dirty or damaged.
If your chimney is dirty or damaged it will not work properly and your fireplace will smoke. If a part such as the damper is damaged it can close your flue and prevent air from flowing.
Maintenance Is Important
While there are some remedies to a smoky chimney, not everything can be fixed by cracking a window, or changing the type of wood you burn. The best and most effective way to insure your chimney works properly is to schedule important routine maintenance. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recommends annual chimney inspections and chimney sweeps as needed. By remembering to schedule these services with your trusted chimney expert, you will know if there is a problem before the damage is done. The best way to recognize a problem is to pay attention to your chimney system.
If your chimney’s efficiency has declined you may have a problem. If your fireplace is consistently smoky, you may have a problem. This is a good time to call the professionals. Only a certified chimney sweep is able to resolve your smoky chimney and return you to your beautiful and relaxing fireplace.