The issue of safety is always on the minds of people who have fireplaces in their homes. Much is known about the dangers of creosote and its contribution to house fires each year. Your fireplace or wood burning stove can still pose a risk even if you clean the chimney regularly. If you want to avoid this you should think about getting a spark arrestor.
This simple attachment can keep sparks or embers from leaving the chimney or the fireplace and traveling through the air. This could easily start a fire outside or even inside the home. The exterior spark arrestor is a mesh covering that stops embers from leaving through the chimney, allowing them to fall back down the chimney where they will harmlessly burn away.
Spark arrestors are durable enough to handle burning embers for a long time. They can be made from galvanized steel or stainless steel. Since they are available in different sizes, you will be able to find one that suits your chimney. Sparks and embers can be just as dangerous inside the home as well.
All that needs to happen is for one burning ember to land on a piece of furniture. Before long the house could be ablaze. On the interior the spark arrestors perform the same function as the ones used outside. One major difference is that the interior spark arrestors usually have an ornate look to help add to the décor or to match the style of the fireplace. Interior spark arrestors are generally not fixed, so you can move yours easily to clean the fireplace.
There is one important warning about chimney spark arrestors. Just as creosote can build up in the chimney, it can accumulate in the mesh screen as well. The smoke that flows through the mesh will leave creosote deposit behind as it cools. This can also catch fire if you fail to get it cleaned regularly. So when you contact a chimney sweep, the spark arrestor will be on the list as well.
If you don’t have spark arrestors, you should talk to your chimney sweep about the importance of this simple addition to your fireplace and chimney safety routine. Putting in a spark arrestor is a good way to ensure the safety of your neighbors’ property as well. Nowadays, some chimney caps come with spark arresting screens attached.
Give us a call at Lou Curley’s Chimney service at 610-626-2439 if you’d like to schedule a full chimney and fireplace inspection or discuss issues you’re having with your chimney. Both of the chimney inspectors who work here are CSIA (Chimney Safety Institute of America) certified and pursue continued education and additional certifications throughout the year. We’re confident that we’re the solution to all of your chimney needs.