We fix smoky fireplaces and chimneys in areas like Fresno, Mendota CA, Los Banos CA, Dinuba CA, Parlier CA, Lemoore CA, Porterville CA, Concoran CA, Avenal CA, and more!
A smoky fireplace is the most common fireplace problem our customers experience. When a fireplace is smoking, it can be a new, intermittent, or pre-existing problem; and there are many potential causes, most of which can be determined with a close inspection of the chimney. Whatever the duration or cause of a smoky fireplace, it is important to put a stop to it because it can be dangerous for combustion byproducts to enter your home. It is even possible for the gases to cause deadly carbon monoxide poisoning. The most common causes of a smoky fireplace follow:
Improper use of a fireplace can cause it to smoke, but it’s the easiest type of smoking problem to remedy. A fire grate should be used so that the flames get needed oxygen. A fire built without a grate typically won’t get hot enough for the chimney to properly ventilate. Move the grate to the back of the firebox, about an inch from the back wall. A buildup of ash on the floor of the firebox could obstruct the air flow underneath the grating. For optimal operation of the chimney, the firebox should be cleaned regularly. To keep a proper amount of air on the fire in a sunken firebox, you probably need to raise the fireplace grate so that it is not situated below the hearth floor.
Clean fires that produce a minimal amount of smoke are the result of using seasoned firewood. When firewood is seasoned, it means that it has low moisture content. Green or wet firewood, on the other hand, expends energy burning out moisture. Unseasoned firewood usually doesn’t get hot enough for the air to rise up the chimney, and a smoky fireplace is the result.
Negative Air Pressure
Homes today tend to be sealed very tightly, and the result can be that the chimney can’t achieve an adequate draft. Negative air pressure can also be caused by venting, such as a kitchen or clothes dryer vent that is pulling air out of the home.
Chimney Obstruction or Restriction
When a chimney becomes clogged, the narrowing of the flue can prevent combustion products from exiting up the chimney. A flue opening can be obstructed or restricted by various objects, such as an animal nest, broken masonry, leaves, an excessive accumulation of creosote, or a damper that won’t fully open.
Clogged Chimney Cap
It’s important to have a chimney cap installed on your chimney because of the many benefits of the accessory. There are times, however, when the chimney topper can become clogged and restrict air flow. Creosote, insects, leaves, animal nests, and other debris can jam chimney caps.
A chimney needs to be a certain height in order to work properly, and it has to do with the slant and height of the roofline. There are times when additional height needs to be added to a chimney, to correct a smoky fireplace. A chimney that is too tall can also create drafting problems.
An improperly designed heating system can cause the fireplace to smoke. There are numerous components to a fireplace and chimney that could cause smoking. For example, there should be no projections in the chimney which restrict the opening. In addition, the fireplace opening should be no more than 10 times the size of the flue opening. If the flue is too narrow, the fireplace will smoke.
Call our chimney technicians to help identify the reason you have a smoky fireplace.