How to Open and Close Your Fireplace Flue?

The flue is the channel that carries smoke and heated air from your fireplace to the outside. Its size, direction and type will depend on the type of chimney and fireplace. 

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There are a variety of damper controls to choose from. Some have a handle while others have a pulley system. Whether you choose a push rod or a pulley system will depend on your installation and style. However, no matter what type of damper you choose, there are a few things to remember when you open and close your fireplace. 

You should not try to open your damper if the flue is still hot. This can be dangerous. Also, you can get a false impression that your damper is open when you have a lot of cold air stored in the flue. To keep yourself safe, make sure to remove any cold air that may have collected. 

Typically, a damper is a pair of small steel doors that is placed in the throat of your fireplace flue. When this door is opened, it will allow a small amount of air to flow through. In the end, this will help your fireplace to function more efficiently and reduce smoky odors. 

If you have a top-mount style damper, you will need to pull a chain in order to open the door. The chain will come down and then be hooked onto a bracket that is located inside your firebox. Once you are ready to close it, you will need to place the chain back on the bracket. 

A rotary style screw control is another way to open and close your damper. This control can be turned clockwise as far as you want. Of course, you should wear a glove when using this device. 

A more modern method is to install a handle. Today’s fireplaces have handles that can be placed inside the opening or above it. Most of these handles are marked to show you how to position the handle in the proper manner. 

Some fireplaces even have a pilot light that burns all year round. These lights are useful to see the amount of flames being pulled up the flue. Other modern fireplaces have a handle that can be tilted vertically or horizontally. 

If you are not sure whether your damper is in the right position, you can check the temperature of the smoke coming from the chimney. This will tell you if your flue is open or closed. You should also feel a draft when you are opening or closing the damper. 

Another useful trick is to place a lighted match next to the flue. As the flames burn, the air current will pull the smoke up the flue. That’s one of the best ways to know whether your flue is open or closed. 

If you need to open your damper, you’ll need to unhook the chain and move it to the open position. Remember, you need to open the damper first before starting a fire.