When colder temperatures start moving into the Chicago area, one of the first things you want to do is light a fire in your fireplace. However, every time you try to start a fire, you end up creating a toxic atmosphere of smoke instead of cozy warmth. You may feel like giving up on your fireplace, but Aelite Chimney Specialties are here to help you solve this common problem. One of the most common questions we are asked by our customers is “Why is my fireplace smoking?” We would like to share with you some of the most typical reasons why this problem occurs.
Debris such as leaves, sticks, or pieces of damaged bricks and mortar joints fall into your chimney. This causes smoke to be forced back into your home, because that debris has blocked the exit path it should take. The chimney sweeps from Aelite Chimney Specialties can remove this blockage from your chimney. By doing this, allowing smoke to exhaust instead of blowing back into your living space.
Incorrect Chimney Dimensions
You could be experiencing smoke issues because your chimney is not tall enough. According to the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA), a chimney must be three feet taller than the shortest part of the roof. Plus, its top should be two feet higher than any part of the building within 10 feet. If your chimney is too short, the draft may not work properly. This can cause smoking issues. Another dimension issue involves the fireplace opening being too large.
Negative Air Pressure
Many homeowners try to increase energy efficiency by weatherizing their homes, which includes sealing every window and door. While this prevents drafts, it can also negatively affect the air pressure when the sealing is extra tight. Not only will a fire not be able to get enough make up air, but the chimney will also be unable to draw our air properly. To alleviate this issue, simply crack open a window in the same room as the fireplace before lighting a fire.
Sometimes the solution to a smoky fireplace be as simple as opening the damper completely. However, if that does not correct the issue, contact us at Aelite Chimney Specialties. We can inspect your chimney to take care of the problem, so you can enjoy your fireplace this winter!