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Fireplace Safety

For those of us who know the enjoyment of having a fireplace, this blog’s for you.

There are probably several things that you have never thought of when it comes to lighting that wintertime fire. I have compiled a list of things to consider before you have that next roaring fire.

  • If you have no history on the condition of your fireplace, it is recommended that you hire a reputable chimney sweep service to come clean and evaluate the condition of your fireplace and flue.

  • Do not use really “green” wood – specifically not wood that has just been cut. That wood contains a lot of moisture that can condense on the fireplace flue. This can lead to creosote buildup, one of the primary causes of flue fires.

  • NEVER burn treated lumber. These fires put off toxic smoke.

  • If you have a gas log lighter, TREC advises putting a clamp or other device to prevent full closure of the damper. The reason for this is so that Carbon Monoxide emissions do not accidentally release into your home.

  • If you do have a gas log lighter, there are some safety tips you should follow when lighting:

- NEVER turn on the gas before lighting your match or lighter. This allows the natural gas or propane to stay low to the hearth and flow out into the room. Upon lighting, a flash fire is imminent.

- Always have the lit match or lighter flame at the log lighter before turning on the gas.

- If you can’t reach the gas valve while holding the lighter, have someone help you. It’s not worth the danger.

  • DO NOT burn trash in your fireplace, as this leaves residues on your flue.

  • Make sure you have a fire extinguisher that’s current and easily accessible.

  • Finally, NEVER leave a fire burning when you go to bed.

Now, go enjoy that fire with your loved one and/or your family. Following these safety tips will help you enjoy many years of safe fireplace usage.

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