There are many components of your chimney system that are installed as a safety precaution. All safety components in your chimney system are extremely important. However, there is one of these components that should never be missing! Without this component, it can cause chimney fires in as little as three and a half hours! This was tested by the National Bureau of Standards (NBS). This chimney component is called a chimney liner.
When you use your fireplace for long periods of time, the inside of your chimney naturally gets hot. Since your masonry is not flammable, you make not think that this is a big deal. However, did you know that the bricks in your chimney can get so hot it causes the woodwork adjacent to your chimney to catch fire? Fire codes today require that there be a line of protective insulation called a chimney liner between the flue and the masonry in your chimney system. Chimney liners can be made out of clay, metal, or are cast-in-place and they generally serve the same function; keeping the hot air flowing up your flue from heating up your masonry too much!
Does your chimney have a liner?
If your house was built after the 1940’s, it is likely that it contains a chimney liner. If your home is older than that, you will need to have your chimney inspected by a Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) certified chimney technician. This is to determine if a chimney liner is present. Even if your home was built after the 1940’s you still should have your liner inspected annually. Why? Depending on the material used to create your liner, it may be starting to weaken and crack. When this happens, chimney gases can cause your masonry to erode, allowing carbon monoxide to enter your home!
What should I do to ensure I have a functioning chimney liner?
The most important thing you can do to ensure that your chimney system is functioning safely? Have it inspected annually by a CSIA-certified chimney technician from Leonard & Sons. During our inspection, we will be able to determine if your chimney liner is functioning correctly. If we see anything that looks suspicious, we will either suggest patching it up, or totally replacing the liner. If we decided to patch your liner, we like to use a product like HeatShield® to cover up any cracks or weak spots. We like using HeatShield® because it’s cheaper, less messy, and less time consuming. However, if it’s determined that your chimney needs to be relined, Leonard & Sons has experienced technicians that can help you out with that as well!
Are you in doubt about the condition of your chimney liner? Don’t hesitate and contact us today to schedule one of our CSIA-certified chimney technicians to come and inspect your chimney system!