Fire Only Where You Want It

chimney-sweep

Don’t do what I do. Do what I say. We have lived in this house for over two years now and today we finally had a visit from the chimney sweep/dryer vent cleaning crew. Please, please, please have these people visit your previously-owned home immediately after you buy it.

Yes, we had a serious fire hazard situation with our dryer vent. Yes, it was preventable. Yes, we are lucky we didn’t burn down the house.

The vent for the dryer that travels through the wall, through the attic, and outside the rooftop vent pipe was packed, PACKED with lint. Extremely flammable stuff, lint is. The vent is clean now, and I expect it will take a much shorter time to dry that load of towels. My cleaning company says the dryer vent should be cleaned once a year. And they give us a discount if we make that next appointment in a timely fashion.

We have only built two fires in the fireplace since we’ve lived here; once, when a gang of bees audibly took up residence in the chimney. Smoked ’em right out, we did. The second fire was in December when we thought we’d do our S’mores indoors, rather than out. The rest of the time, I was waaaay too skeptical about the condition of the flue, chimney, and firebox to use it much until we had it inspected and cleaned.

Turns out, the fire system wasn’t bad. However, our grate is too low to the bricks on the bottom of the firebox- too low to get proper ventilation underneath to feed oxygen to the fire. Also, found out that, with our fireplace construction, nothing is supporting the bricks at the back of the firebox, so we can’t let logs fall and hit that wall, lest we crack the mortar and provide an avenue for fire to escape into the wall. So, need a new grate. And we know to be careful of the back wall.

Patty and Sam were extremely efficient, tidy, educational, well-mannered, and good natured (and Patty is a ‘cat person’!). Below is a photo of their family-run business card.

chimney-and-dryer-vent-feb-6-2017-12-59-pm

 

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