Do you hear scratching sounds throughout your house or smell foul odors from the fireplace? If so, you just might have unwanted animals in your chimney.
However, there’s no need to panic. With our experts on your side, you can prevent these unwelcome guests from causing bigger problems. The Lords Chimney crew is here to discuss the basics of animal removal, including signs to watch out for, the risks you face, and how to protect your home from a future intrusion.
Signs of Wildlife Invasion
Having small creatures in your flue might seem harmless, but it’s best to hire wildlife removal services as soon as possible to protect the health and safety of everyone in your home. Let’s go through some of the common signs of animals in your chimney.
- Droppings: When animals build nests, they usually leave droppings around them. As soon as you notice animal waste in your fireplace, it’s almost a sure sign that you have critters living in your chimney.
- Fur & Feathers: In addition to droppings, you might also notice fur and feathers on your roof or fireplace. Once you see these signs, it’s a safe bet that they’re living in your flue. Birds, squirrels, and raccoons are the most popular chimney dwellers.
- Strange Sounds: Hear chirping, squeaking, or clawing sounds come from somewhere in your home? Don’t rule out the chimney – you might have a house guest on your hands.
- Foul Odors: When animals live in your flue, it can take on a distinct and unpleasant odor. You might get a whiff of urine, droppings, or the food they bring in. Worst of all, if a creature dies in your chimney, it will emit the pungent smell of decay – and attract pests too.
- Stressed or Excitable Pets: If you notice your dog or cat become agitated around the fireplace, your house might have an infestation. Pets are more receptive to other creatures than humans, so they’re likely to notice signs before you do.
If you notice any of the signs above, schedule a chimney evaluation immediately.
Negative Effects of Animals in Your Chimney
Animal removal services are the only way to remove your uninvited guests and restore your home to the calm and clean state it was in before. We’ll walk you through the ways in which these intruders can threaten your peace and damage your home.
- Increased Risk of Fire: Animal nests can cause blockages and poor ventilation. They can easily catch fire and allow smoke to back into your home. If you’ve noticed signs of birds or other creatures seeking refuge in your flue, it’s best to call a professional as soon as possible to keep your loved ones and your home safe from harm.
- Potential Spread of Disease: Seeing animals in forests and gardens may be cute, but they can be dangerous when they enter your home. While they don’t typically hurt people directly, their droppings, dander, and any pests they bring along with them can make people sick. They are particularly dangerous for people with compromised immune systems and severe allergies.
- Flue Damage: Even the littlest creatures can cause big issues throughout your chimney system. When they get into your chimney, they leave your flue vulnerable to damage from debris, water, and other pest. This can eventually expose surrounding materials to heat or flue gases, creating a home hazard – and may require your chimney liner to be repaired too.
- Clogging & Poor Airflow: Animal nesting materials are known to clog your flue quickly, and if the animals pass away inside your system, this can also cause blockages. Drafting problems not only cause your system to operate inefficiently, but can cause smoke back-up and fire hazards too.
- Inconvenience: Some animals, like chimney swifts, are protected by the Migratory Bird Treaty Act so, once they nest, you’re stuck with them until they leave again. You can then install chimney caps to keep them from coming back, but you can’t forcefully remove them from your home.
Ways to Protect Your Home from Wildlife Invasion
So, how do you keep animals out of your chimney? We recommend the strategies below.
- Seal Your Home: The easiest and most convenient way to keep animals out of your property is to seal your home. We recommend installing a quality and properly-sized chimney cap to achieve this. It’s also ideal to close any other openings in your home, including roof vents and any small gaps and cracks in your roof or walls.
- Keep Your Yard Tidy: Animals typically look for the same things that humans do in a home — protection from the elements, safety from predators, and a reliable source of food and water. When your lawn offers all of the above, it will attract various animals that might eventually find their way into your chimney. That said, things like raking leaves, picking up loose debris, and disposing of food scraps properly can make a big difference in keeping them away. It’ll also helps to make sure tree limbs are trimmed back at least 10 feet from the chimney structure.
- Schedule Regular Chimney Inspections: Homeowners are responsible for keeping wildlife away from their property, but nobody expects you to know everything about removing animals from your flue. If you suspect an animal has entered, call in a professional for an inspection right away. In these cases, the sooner you act, the better.
Book a Houston Chimney Sweeping Session Now
Trust us on this – when it comes to unwanted animal guests, prevention is better than cure. If you’re interested in putting up some safeguards to prevent creatures from entering your home, we’re here to help.
At Lords Chimney, our technicians boast unmatched experience, and we use the latest technology to keep our customers’ chimneys, fireplaces, and dryer vents in peak condition all year long.
Call us now at 832-280-9233 or reach out online to request a free, no-obligation quotation.