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So, you’re all set to put your fireplace to use, but something is off. Whether there’s a slight issue you can’t quite pinpoint or something big and obvious, you’re not getting the experience you’re hoping for and you want to find solutions fast. But where do you start?
Well, here at Lords Chimney, we know that the more educated homeowners are, the safer they’ll be able to operate their appliances. That’s why we’re here to give you the lowdown on what to look out for in both gas-fueled and wood-burning fireplaces and appliances.
When it comes to operating a gas appliance, one thing we urge all of our customers to do is trust their senses. Your nose, for example, is more sensitive than you might think – if something smells off, it’s likely you have some type of gas leak.
Another indicator is burning eyes or even the “feeling” of something being off. In other words, trust your spidey senses! If your stomach is upset, your head hearts, you’re feeling dizzy, or something else along those lines and you have nothing to blame it on, there could be carbon monoxide in your home.
Now, in the case of a carbon monoxide leak, the biggest warning sign is your carbon monoxide detector going off. Don’t have a carbon monoxide detector? Then it’s time to invest in one! It could make all the difference in keeping you and your loved ones safer.
If your detectors do start beeping, it’s important to leave the area immediately and call the appropriate authorities for assistance. Carbon monoxide causes hundreds of deaths every single year, so this is one substance you can never be too careful with.
Another thing to keep in mind when working with gas appliances is to check your batteries. Believe it or not, some homeowners call in a sweep to check on an appliance that’s not working only to discover the batteries were in backwards.
If your carbon monoxide detectors aren’t going off and your batteries look good, but problems are still occurring, it’s time to call us in for an inspection. Most gas appliances are designed to automatically shut down when your safety may be threatened. The unit could be overheating, not venting correctly or maybe the oxygen levels are off.
And in some cases, it’s the safety feature itself that isn’t working. Regardless, the entire system will need to be checked out, so a visit from our team is always a great first step.
When it comes to a wood-burning fireplace, a common sign that something is off is smoke in your living space. Now, in many cases you’ll actually see the smoke entering, but sometimes you’ll smell it without seeing any in your home. Many love that classic smoke-y smell and think it’s normal, but it actually shouldn’t be present. If you smell smoke at all, something is wrong, and it’s time to call in the experts
What does smoke in your space typically indicate? Well, there are a number of things that cause this. You could have excess creosote build-up, clogs in your flue, incorrect chimney dimensions, poor draft or air flow, a stuck damper, or some type of masonry damage. Fortunately, our team has the tools and training to spot and resolve the issues in no time.
It’s also important to keep an eye on your masonry. If it’s showing any signs of cracking or crumbling, then there’s likely water damage. Ignoring water damage leads to inefficiency and costly repairs, and it can even trigger a house fire, gas leak, or chimney fire if too much damage is done.
We have preventive services that can help, including waterproofing, flashing installation, crown repair, and more.
Sometimes repair work simply isn’t an option if the damage is too extensive or if your system is too old. So, how do you know when it’s time to invest in a new unit altogether? Well, our team can help with that, too.
The fact of the matter is that if you know how your chimney is supposed to work, then you’ll know when it’s time for repairs or replacement parts. Lords Chimney can help you gain the necessary knowledge to know when it’s time to hire someone for professional care. We’re happy to keep homeowners as informed and as educated as possible.
One thing is for certain – you don’t want to wait until the system completely fails before investing in care from a certified sweep. This is when major accidents happen, and you could end up putting your home and family at risk.
In the end, it’s important to remember that fireplaces, stoves, inserts, and the like are all appliances that will eventually need to be replaced. Fireplaces are known for their longevity, so it’s easy to forget that. Yet, if you buy a home that’s decades old with the original unit still installed, just know that you might be replacing it sooner than you think.
Basically, when we come to look at your system, anything over 20 years old will get a bid for replacement. This will give you an approximate estimate as far as when a new system will be in order so that you can start planning for it (and saving up).
If we take a look and realize that you need something new right away, it’s important that you stop using your appliance until a new one is installed. If a new one isn’t in the budget, shut your fireplace down until it is. Your safety and satisfaction depend on it!
Regular maintenance is vital for good chimney health, so if you have yet to schedule your annual inspection then it’s time to reach out to the Lords Chimney team today at 281-497-4000 or you contact us online! We look forward to helping you out soon!
If you own a home in the Houston area, and you need your dryer vents cleaned, why not turn to your reliable chimney sweeps to help you out? The staff at Lords Chimney are CSIA Certified Dryer Exhaust Technicians, fully trained and qualified to help you maintain a safer and better functioning appliance.
Many underestimate the negative impact of clogged and dirty dryer vents, but consider how many times you run your dryer throughout the week. Many homeowners run it multiple times and, if your family is big enough, you may even find yourself running the machine two or three times in one day! That’s a lot of energy being used, so it’s important to do everything you can to ensure it’s functioning as efficiently as possible. Clean vents play a huge factor in that!
The more debris you have built up inside of your vents, the harder your dryer has to work to get your laundry properly dry. If you find yourself forced to run cycle after cycle because your clothes continue to feel damp, don’t assume the problem lies with the appliance, itself. It’s very likely that a simple cleaning done by our professional crew will solve the problem!
Along with this, dirty vents can lead to some pretty serious and life-threatening issues in your home. One thing of concern is gas leaks and exposure to harmful toxins, such as carbon monoxide. As you may know, carbon monoxide can be deadly when not treated soon enough and, unfortunately, detecting its presence in your home is nearly impossible, due to its colorless and odorless nature.
Clean dryer vents, along with multiple carbon monoxide detectors throughout the home, greatly minimizing the risk of loved ones being harmed by this poisonous gas. We’ll ensure all pathways are cleared and ready to go, so any fumes produced by the dryer can safely escape outdoors. Rest easier by giving us a call right away!
Harmful fumes are a major issue but, unfortunately, they’re not all you have to worry about when it comes to lint buildup in your venting system. As you can imagine, lint is highly flammable, so it’s important to keep it a safe distance away from the extra heat your dryer produces. Yet, when it piles up and clogs your system, it blocks the pathway for these high temperatures to escape, causing the appliance to overheat and potentially triggering a fire in your dryer.
This occurs thousands of times per year all throughout the United States, causing hundreds of injuries, some deaths, and costing the homeowners thousands of dollars in damages. Don’t let yourself become a victim of this easily preventable disaster. Call us in right away, so we can get you back to where you need to be!
Is your dryer taking way longer than normal to dry your clothes? Are you noticing excess lint in and around your appliance? Is your laundry room feeling especially warm lately? You may need a dryer vent cleaning! These signs, along with musty smells, hot clothes, and a malfunctioning dryer vent hood flap, indicate your vents are filled with dirt, lint, and other debris, all of which are causing blockages and leading to inefficiency.
A dryer that’s not working right can be extremely frustrating, and if a dirty dryer vent is involved, you could find yourself in some danger! Learn more below, then give our experts a call today. Our team members are Certified Dryer Exhaust Technicians, ready and able to serve you soon!
At Lords Chimney, we prioritize fire safety and keeping homes in our service area as safe as possible. That being said, this doesn’t just pertain to fireplace maintenance! Keeping your dryer vents clean and free from excess lint and debris does wonders to reduce your risk of fires, and we’re here to ensure you don’t have to stress about a thing.
You might be surprised to know that dryers are the cause of thousands of fires every single year in the United States, and the majority of these fires are due to dirty vents. As you can imagine, homeowners in these situations have lost a lot, and their loved ones were put at serious risk. It’s not worth taking any chances when the safety and well being of your family is involved. Rest easier by counting on us today!
Unfortunately, when it comes to dirty vents, fires aren’t the only thing you need to be concerned about. When your system is clogged, the fumes your dryer produces have nowhere to escape. This means they’ll turn around and go right back into your living space, affecting the health of the people within it.
When people are exposed to harmful toxins, like carbon monoxide, they can face some serious health issues. Carbon monoxide can cause dizziness, nausea, confusion, vomiting, headaches, and more, and in many cases, people pass out. If not treated promptly, carbon monoxide exposure can be fatal. Unfortunately, this gas is extremely hard to detect, as it has no color or odor.
Preventative maintenance is always your best option! By investing in dryer vent cleanings (as well as regular chimney and fireplace care), you reduce your risk of exposure significantly. We also urge homeowners to put carbon monoxide detectors throughout their home. Should any gas be present, these often offer the first and only warning signs that something is amiss.
If you have any questions or concerns regarding the condition of your dryer vents, don’t hesitate to give us a call! We’re ready and willing to help out folks all throughout our service area. We can’t wait to make your home safer soon.
With summer drawing to a close and fall weather ready to arrive, many homeowners are preparing to use their fireplaces for the first time in several months. While these wonderful heating appliances can keep our homes toasty all winter long, they can also pose a safety risk if not properly maintained and used. One of the biggest dangers when using any fireplace, stove, or heating appliance is carbon monoxide.
Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless, tasteless gas that is virtually impossible to notice without a carbon monoxide detector. This dangerous gas is often referred to as a “silent killer” because it is so difficult to detect.
Carbon monoxide is created when fuels are burned completely. It can be created by coal, charcoal, gasoline, kerosene, oil, propane, natural gas, and wood. In your home stoves, space heaters, furnaces, outdoor grills, fireplaces, water heaters, and vehicles all produce carbon monoxide. All fuel burning appliances have venting systems in place to prevent carbon monoxide from entering your home.
While fireplaces and other heating appliances have venting systems in place to prevent carbon monoxide exposure, damage or deterioration can cause them to malfunction. Because of this, it is extremely important that homeowners recognize the signs and symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning.
In small quantities, exposure to carbon monoxide will cause flu-like symptoms; sleepiness, headache, and nausea are all early symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning. With prolonged exposure symptoms will continue to worsen and impaired coordination, dizziness, and shortness of breath will begin to occur. Continued exposure in high concentrations can lead to coma and death.
While entirely preventable with a functioning carbon monoxide detector, carbon monoxide poisoning claims as many as 400 lives each year in the United States. If you believe you are experiencing symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning, immediately move outside or to another fresh air location. Emergency services and poison control should be called before reentering the home.
There are a number of easy and simple ways that homeowners can protect themselves and their family against exposure to carbon monoxide.
Fear of carbon monoxide exposure should never keep you from using and enjoying your fireplace. However, it is important that homeowners are aware of the dangers that carbon monoxide can cause. For more information on how to protect your family against carbon monoxide or to schedule preventative fireplace maintenance, contact Lords Chimney today.
A drafty fireplace that blows smoke and soot into your home is more than just a nuisance; it can also affect the air quality in your home. With a number of potential causes of draft problems, a chimney inspection is often needed to identify the underlying cause. Resolving chimney drafting issues can help get rid of smoky odors in your home, prevent soot and ash from blowing onto your carpets and furnishings, and minimize your family’s chance of exposures to dangerous gasses such as carbon monoxide.
Many homeowners are surprised to learn that indoor air pollution is most often caused by interior sources of pollution – including drafty fireplaces. These drafting issues can affect air quality in two ways: first, by not bringing in enough fresh outdoor air to dilute pollutants, and second, by not venting and carrying air pollutants out of the home. These conditions are often made worse by high temperatures and humid weather, weather conditions which the Houston area is used to experiencing.
When a fireplace “drafts,” the hot air, smoke, and gasses produced by the fire are pushed up and out of the chimney, safely venting to the outside. However, blockages, air pressure changes, improperly sized chimneys, and a whole host of other reasons can prevent proper drafting from occurring. When this happens, dangerous smoke, soot, and gasses can back draft into your home.
While draft problems are fairly common, there are a number of things that can cause them to occur. The following are a few of the many potential causes of a chimney draft problem.
Drafting issues can do more than just prevent you from enjoying your fireplace – they can also affect the indoor air quality in your home. If you are experiencing an ongoing drafting issue, don’t just stop using your fireplace and hope it resolves itself; contact Lords Chimney today to learn how we can help improve ventilation problems and air quality in your home!