Our Company Blog

Ready To Enjoy Your Fireplace During The Holidays? Schedule Today!

Anyone with a fireplace knows how much they enhance the atmosphere of any holiday gathering. A fireplace adds something special to any room. It also enhances the cheerful and festive mood that every homeowner seeks throughout the holiday season!

That being said, it’s important to take the proper precautions to ensure your appliance runs safer and more efficiently all season long. That’s why it’s vital to get your annual inspection on the books now, before your start throwing get-together’s and inviting guests over. Call the staff at Lords Chimney today, and we’ll get an appointment set up right away!

Running A Safer Fireplace

If you’re lighting fires in your home, you want to ensure your fireplace system is functioning as safely as possible. Keeping guests and family members safe is always the top priority, so your chimney needs to be in tip top shape throughout your entire burning season! By investing in annual inspections, you ascertain that no necessary repairs and/or sweepings are needed before you start lighting fires. And neglecting this regular maintenance could land you in some serious trouble!

One issue that may occur is the build up of creosote. Creosote forms as fires burn in your wood-burning fireplace, and it’s a highly flammable substance. Since it’s prone to catching fire, you want to make sure it doesn’t accumulate. Otherwise, you may be dealing with a chimney fire before you know it!

Chimney fires not only weaken the entire structure of your chimney. They make it unsafe for everyday use, too! Gaps will quickly form, leaving your home and roof vulnerable to stray flames. The worst part is, many of these fires occur unnoticed. You could be using your fireplace, without even realizing you’re at risk! It’s not worth putting off this important maintenance – call us in today.

Ensuring Efficiency

Besides making sure that everything is running safely, annual inspections help enhance the efficiency of your appliance overall. You wouldn’t want to run a fireplace that is only providing minimal heat output, would you? That’s not cost effective at all, and it makes for a frustrating evening! All parts need to be in good condition in order for everything to work together cohesively. Call us in, and we’ll make sure you’re good to go!

Avoiding Expensive Repairs

Repairs that go unaddressed will only get worse over time and, if things weaken too much, your chimney may settle or collapse. Cracks, holes, and other issues in your chimney’s structure need to be addressed as soon as possible to avoid further (and more costly) issues down the line. Inspect in affordable maintenance now to bypass expensive repairs down the line!

Along with this, repairs take time and, with the busy season underway, we want to make sure we have the time and manpower to address every one of our customers’ issues. Call us at Lords Chimney today, so we can be sure to get any other required services done before your next holiday party or event. We can’t wait to help you out soon!

We Are Proud To Serve Houston!

Houston, Texas is a city loved by visitors and residents, alike. It is rich in culture and diversity, and there are countless celebrations, events, and holiday festivities to enjoy all year round. No matter your age, interests, or lifestyle –  Houston has something for you!

Ready for some family fun?

There is a wide array of museums, parks, and attractions, all filled with entertainment for any age. Hermann Park is a great spot filled with things to keep you busy all day long! Houston is also home to Memorial Park, the Houston Hall of Fame, and Sam Houston Park. You will never run out of things to do!

However, the fun doesn’t end there! Enjoy a baseball game at Minute Maid Park, explore the Johnson Space Center, or head downtown to experience countless sights, restaurants, shopping centers, and more!

All of these attractions are why Houston remains a popular spot year after year. At the end of a long day exploring this major city, you need a relaxing place to rest your feet! What better spot than in front of your fireplace? For chimney service you can trust, turn to the experts at Lords Chimney today!

What We Can Offer You

Our staff is CSIA and CDET trained and certified, which means we know what we are doing when it comes to your fireplace, dryer vent, and chimney. We strive for excellence in everything we do, so you know you are getting the best services available. This is why the Better Business Bureau has given us an A+ rating – we know how to do business right! Check out just some of our services below.

Inspections, Sweepings & Cleanings

We will inspect your chimney and do a thorough sweeping, so you can rest easy knowing all parts are safe and ready for regular use. We perform level I, II, and III inspections – whatever you need, we can help you out. Once we assess the situation, we always consult with the homeowner, so no work is started with prior authorization.

We can also install, inspect, and clean your dryer vents. If you are noticing issues with your dryer, contact us to so we can take a look at your situation and fix any issues that may be occurring.

Repairs

Are you facing issues with your chimney crown, firebox, chase top, damper, or chimney cap? Is your brickwork starting to crack or show other signs of deterioration? If so, we can repair damaged chimney parts, patch any leaks, and address any water damage that has occurred. Letting necessary repairs go unaddressed can lead to big problems down the line, costing you a lot of time and money. Save yourself the hassle by investing in our services today.

Installations

We can install your fireplace, gas appliance, or insert, so you are left with the home of your dreams! So, contact us right away to learn more about our various options for remodels, facelifts, and conversions.

…And More!

On top of all that, we offer a wide line of fireplaces, fireplace accessories, fans, mantels, glass doors, and more! In addition, we can also reline your chimney, remove nests and other debris, and install and repair flashing. Whatever you need, we want to help!

Call Lords Chimney today to schedule an appointment with the best chimney techs around. We look forward to making your home the best it can be!

Chimney sweeping logs are no replacement for a certified chimney sweep!

Every time you burn wood in your fireplace or wood stove, condensation forms on your chimney’s flue. That condensation forms a dark, tar-like, highly combustible substance called creosote. When creosote builds up in your chimney, it can lead to a damaging and dangerous chimney fire, or it can force carbon dioxide back into your home, endangering your family.

Creosote sweeping logs promise a solution. They claim to reduce creosote buildup in your chimney simply by burning them in your chimney. Some such logs carry the seal of approval of the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA), but even the CSIA acknowledges that the logs are not a replacement for your annual chimney sweeping and inspection by a CSIA-certified chimney sweep.

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Creosote sweeping logs don’t remove all creosote

Creosote sweeping logs work by sending chemicals up your chimney that react with the creosote, causing it to flake away and fall back down your chimney to your firebox, where it either burns up or can be swept away. At best, the logs only remove up to 60 percent of the creosote from you chimney over a 15-day period. That means that creosote still can build up to dangerous levels within your chimney, blocking smoke from leaving your chimney and potentially igniting a chimney fire.

Additionally, many fireplaces aren’t a straight vertical channel. That means creosote can fall to and gather on your chimney’s horizontal surfaces, where it can build up. If your chimney is a straight vertical line, the creosote that falls into the firebox can cause flare ups that can harm your hearth or someone standing near it.

Creosote sweeping logs can’t spot problems with your chimney

Your annual chimney sweeping is more than just a cleaning. Your certified chimney sweep also inspects your chimney for structural damage, water leaks, crumbling mortar, and other problems. A creosote sweeping log simply can’t help you identify and solve problems with your chimney. Missing your annual chimney inspection gives small problems, like a minor leak, time to grow into a major problem that potentially will be expensive to repair.

More importantly, your certified chimney sweep looks for problems that could lead to a chimney fire or carbon monoxide poisoning. That includes animals that have nested in your chimney or chimney fires that have gone undetected.

Schedule your annual chimney sweeping today!

While the CSIA recognizes that creosote sweeping logs can be a valuable piece of chimney maintenance, eliminating some creosote in between professional chimney sweepings, replacing your annual chimney sweeping and inspection with a creosote sweeping log is dangerous both for your home and your family. If you’re overdue for your annual chimney sweeping and inspection, call the CSIA-certified chimney sweeps at Lords Chimney. We’ll make sure that your chimney is creosote-free and ready to burn safely this winter.

The Importance of CSIA Certification

When it comes to fireplace and chimney service, installation, and maintenance, finding the right company to work with can be hard to do. With so many businesses to choose from, it can be difficult to determine the seasoned professionals from the seasonal workers.

Although anyone with a brush and a truck might be able to call themselves a chimney sweep, few have earned the Chimney Safety Institute of America, or CSIA, certification. By hiring a certified chimney sweep, you can feel confident that you are working with a highly trained and educated professional.

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Are all chimney sweeps certified?

Many homeowners mistakenly believe that all chimney sweeps are created equally. Unfortunately, there are few regulations or restrictions on the industry. Because of this, any handyman with a couple of brushes can call themselves a chimney sweep. Oftentimes, these “chimney sweeps” do little more than push around the ash and soot in your chimney, making more of a mess than actually cleaning the chimney.

In order to get the best service possible for your fireplace and chimney system, it is important to work with a CSIA certified chimney sweep. The CSIA certification is recognized as the gold standard in the industry. Chimney sweeps that hold a CSIA certification have completed extensive education, training, and testing and represent the best in the industry in terms of skill and professionalism.

In order to earn their CSIA certification, chimney sweeps must study and be tested on topics such as:

  • Fireplace and chimney safety practices
  • Local and national building and fire codes
  • Fireplace and chimney building dynamics for wide range of units
  • Installation and maintenance practices for fireplaces, inserts, and stoves
  • Current EPA standards for fireplaces, inserts, and stoves

CSIA certified chimney sweeps must also stay up to date on current industry practices. Because they must retest every three years in order to maintain their certification, CSIA-certified sweeps have information on the most recent safety and technology developments and best practices in the industry.

Hiring a certified chimney sweep

Because chimney maintenance can directly impact the safety of you and your family, it is important to work with a professional that you trust. Before hiring a chimney sweep, consider asking them the following questions:

  • How long has your chimney sweeping company been in business?
  • Can you offer current references?
  • Do you have unresolved complaints filed with any consumer protection agencies or the Better Business Bureau?
  • Does the company or the individual chimney sweep carry business liability insurance policy to protect my home and furnishings against accidents?
  • Will the company guarantee that a CSIA Certified Chimney Sweep will be on my job site?

Don’t trust your family’s safety to the cheapest company you can find. Instead, hire a CSIA certified chimney sweep to ensure that your chimney’s maintenance and repairs are done correctly – the first time. In the Houston area, contact Lords Chimney to schedule an appointment with our CSIA certified chimney sweeps!

Is Your Chimney Up to Modern Standards?

Owning an older home often includes beautiful original building features. One of the most sought after features in historical homes are fireplaces and chimneys; these original structures were built with quality materials and designed to last. However, as charming as an original fireplace is, it may not be up to modern building standards.

Older chimneys often have unique problems and different considerations than more recently built fireplaces. Because of this, it is important that homeowners with older fireplaces are educated about the state and condition of their fireplace system.

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How old is old?

An older home doesn’t necessarily mean an out of date fireplace. For the most part, “old” chimneys are more than 60 years old and are exclusively built with masonry. Many fireplaces built after the 1950s are prefabricated metal or factory built units; while there are still brick chimneys built after that time, a number may also be block chimneys.

Common problems in old chimneys

For older chimney and fireplace systems, there are a number of safety issues that are likely to occur.

  • Unlined chimney: One of the most common issues seen in older chimneys is a lack of a chimney lining. While it may be tempting to believe that a chimney that has been unlined for 100 years or more is safe to use, best practices indicate that all chimneys should be lined. Relining the chimney can improve the efficiency of your fireplace as well as protect the rest of your home from the heat and gasses created during combustion.
  • Chimney caps and crowns: Older chimneys often lack caps and crowns that meet modern building standards. All fireplace systems should have a chimney cap to protect the chimney from moisture, animals, blockages, and debris. Likewise, the chimney crown of many older homes is more likely to be degraded. Because chimney crowns are constantly exposed to the elements they are more likely to deteriorate faster than the rest of the chimney system. Repairing or relaying the chimney crown can ensure that your chimney is structurally sound.
  • Masonry damage: Although chimneys are built to last, long term exposure to the elements – especially without regular maintenance – can lead to masonry damage. Masonry joints are more likely to be affected than the bricks themselves, which can compromise the structural integrity of the chimney itself. The tuckpointing process can remove and replace old mortar without removing any brick. Doing this can help reinforce the chimney and protect the surrounding bricks from damage. Likewise, applying a waterproofing agent to the chimney can protect it against further water damage and help extend the life of the masonry.

Owning a home with an older fireplace system often comes with its own unique set of maintenance issues. However, by better understanding the structure and condition of your chimney you can continue to enjoy it for years to come. Contact Lords Chimney today for more information on how we can help you with the upkeep and maintenance of your older chimney, as well as make sure it is up to modern building standards.