Fireplaces are very reliable fixtures for many homes in Northern Virginia. They provide warmth during the colder months while also adding a classic look to any modern home. Sadly, just like many fixtures there comes a time where it is time to call the local fireplace companies to schedule a much-needed repair.
Despite constant maintenance and care, there are still some instances where the fireplace needs more than just a thorough cleaning. The best way to determine if it needs professional repairs is to look out for the following signs:
1 – Smoke Gets Trapped Inside The Home
The first and most obvious sign that the fireplace needs immediate repairs is when the home starts to feel like a smoker. When lighting a fire the smoke will usually exit the house through the chimney. In some cases, homeowners forget to open the damper, but once this human error is resolved, smoke should clear right away.
However, in cases where smoke never seems to fully exit the house, there might be a deeper issue that requires professional repairs. If you notice smoke is building up inside your house, stop using the fireplace and call the trusted fireplace companies and schedule the repairs as soon as possible.
2 – Cracks On The Mortar Joints
Traditional fireplaces are usually built using bricks and stone which need constant mortar repairs throughout the years. Since the materials are very porous, they absorb water and form cracks. Simple DIY mortar repairs can remedy the issue, but only if the cracks do not spread.
In situations where the mortar joints continue to crack, even after DIY repairs are made, it is time to call the professionals.
3 – Spalling Bricks
One danger of doing DIY mortar repairs is the risk of brick spalling. This usually happens when the mortar used is bad quality coupled with an incorrect compression rate calculation. The mortar cannot handle the brick expansion and without expert intervention and repairs, the bricks will likely end up flaking and peeling.
If spalling bricks aren’t repaired as soon as possible the fireplace or chimney can collapse, resulting in a safety issue.
4 – Chimney Fires
A chimney fire is a serious sign that the fireplace needs immediate professional repairs. It is best for homeowners to discontinue their use of the fireplace until the chimney can restore or replace the brick liners and allow the chimney to withstand high temperatures like before.
There is no DIY remedy for an issue like chimney fires, it is best left to the hands of an experienced repair crew.
5 – Rusted Damper
A rusted damper is usually caused by excess moisture. This results in a damper that cannot seal properly, is hard to open and close or is permanently stuck. Using a fireplace with a rusted or damaged damper is very dangerous. Call the professionals for damper repairs or replacement as soon as possible.
If you notice any of the signs mentioned above, stop using the fireplace right away. Repairs should be done by professionals to ensure the safety of everyone inside the home.
JCS Home Services is one of the most trusted fireplace companies today. For fireplace repair, fireplace maintenance, or fireplace upgrades, contact us today!