Function: A fireplace is typically an auxiliary heat source with a visible open flame, designed to operate safely within a structure.

What We Look At: Evidence of a "do-it-yourself" installation.  Is the fireplace safe to use?. . .i.e., creosote buildup in the flue, proper hearth width, clearance from combustibles, etc.  Many older fireplaces do not have proper fresh air venting used for combustion, and are thereby notoriously inefficient.  We see fewer problems with newer free-standing sealed gas fireplaces, than with open-hearth wood-burning fireplaces.  

Typical problems we see are: Deterioration of the firebrick and mortar joints; build up of creosote in the chimney flue; improper clearances from combustibles; cracked terra-cota flue liners; improper connection & materials used for gas lines to natural gas units; etc.

 

    

            

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