How to Repair a Fireplace Flue?
The fireplace flue is a vital part of your chimney, and it should be repaired as needed to keep your home safe and well-insulated. It’s also important to keep your chimney topped off and free from debris that could interfere with its ability to safely draft your fireplace.
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If you have a wood-burning stove, furnace, or fireplace and have noticed that your heating bills are increasing, the problem may be with the chimney system. Your flue can become blocked by creosote, preventing the proper amount of smoke and gases from venting.
You may also notice that the masonry of your chimney is cracking, which can allow moisture and heat to seep in and cause damage. These cracks need to be repaired to prevent moisture from entering and your flue liner from becoming damaged.
When a flue liner is cracked, it can create a downdraft that sends cold air into your home. This causes your heater to work harder to heat your home, increasing your energy bills. It can also make your home smoky, which is a safety concern as well.
Typically, the best way to fix a crack in your chimney flue is to replace it with a new stainless steel liner. This will improve the performance of your fireplace, wood stove, or furnace, as well as protect the chimney and your home from rust and other harmful elements.
Chimneys can get clogged with a buildup of debris, including leaves, dirt, and other items that are not meant to be in your chimney. This can block the chimney’s ability to safely draft your fireplace and may even cause a house fire.
It’s a good idea to get your chimney swept on a regular basis to keep it free of clogs, so if you’re experiencing any of the following problems, call for an expert to clean your chimney flue:
If your damper is stuck in one position, it’s a sign that you need to have it fixed or replaced. Fortunately, dampers can often be easily removed with a simple tool that fits onto the nut and bolt that holds them to your chimney frame.
Start by cleaning the damper to remove all of the ash and other debris that has built up over time. You can use a brush or a handheld whisk broom to do this. If the damper is rusted or otherwise hard to remove, you can try spraying it with a penetrating oil like WD-40 and tapping it gently with a hammer.
You can also use a small piece of wood to push down on the rusted damper to loosen it and then remove it from the chimney. Be sure to leave the rod that connects it to the chimney and the nut that keeps it on your damper intact as you work with it, so it doesn’t fall into the firebox when you take it out.
Another common issue that can lead to a stuck damper is a rusted plate on the bottom of the damper. This can be caused by rainwater soaking into the chimney and causing it to rust.