For safety reasons, the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA), the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), and other national fire safety organizations recommend that you have your chimney professionally inspected once a year. At Ashbusters, we utilize the three levels of chimney inspections as established by the NFPA in its Standard 211 for chimneys, fireplaces, vents, and solid fuel burning appliances, depending on the situation of the chimney. If you have not made any changes to your heating appliance or system in the past year, your chimney will need the basic Level 1 chimney inspection. Our CSIA-certified chimney sweeps provide this level of chimney inspection with our annual chimney sweeping service for your convenience. We are often asked a few common questions about our chimney inspection services, and we would like to answer these questions for you now.
Why do I need my chimney professionally inspected every year?
An annual chimney inspection is crucial for the safety and efficiency of your chimney and venting system. Ashbusters will check for potential problems that could cause hazards such as chimney fires, carbon monoxide leaks, smoke issues, and even the possible collapse of the structure of your chimney. Since the CSIA and the NFPA suggest homeowners have their chimneys swept and inspected before lighting the first fire of the year, late summer and early fall are excellent times to schedule this important maintenance service.
What can I expect from a Level 1 chimney inspection from Ashbusters?
After sweeping your chimney, our CSIA-certified chimney technicians will perform a visual inspection of the visible parts of your chimney. Anything that can be reached will be included in both the interior and exterior of your chimney. During a Level 1 chimney inspection, our chimney sweeps will not use tools to open or remove doors, panels, or coverings, but they may need common tools to examine portions of the appliance and its connection to the chimney. Clearances surrounding the appliance and any parts such as glass doors and gaskets are also inspected to check to see if they need repairing or replacing. We will guarantee that your chimney is capable of delivering exhaust out of your house as it should. You will receive a written evaluation of your chimney after our inspection is complete.
When would I need a Level 2 or 3 chimney inspection?
A Level 2 chimney inspection is recommended if you have changed your heating appliance, an operating malfunction or external event has caused damage to the system, or you are buying or selling the home. This level includes everything in the Level 1 inspection and an examination of the accessible parts of the chimney, including the attic, basement, or crawl spaces. Ashbusters would recommend you have a Level 3 inspection if any hazard has been indicated in concealed parts of the chimney and flue during a Level 1 or 2 inspection. A very in-depth examination, a Level 3 inspection involves the removal, and possibly destruction, of parts of the chimney, as necessary for safety reasons.
Need to schedule your annual chimney inspection? Contact us at Ashbusters today to make an appointment to ensure your safety when enjoying your fireplace this fall and winter.