Chimney sweeps can help prevent fires to your home
November 13, 2014 at 8:50 PM CST - Updated July 2 at 1:30 AM
GULFPORT, MS (WLOX)
Temperatures are dropping and it's expected to get even colder later on this week. One thing that goes perfect with cold weather, besides hot cocoa, is a cozy fire.
An evening by the fireplace sounds nice, but it could also turn disastrous if it turns into a chimney or house fire.
That's why experts says if you haven't already, now is the best time to get your chimney cleaned and inspected.
Bobby Sullivan, who is the owner of Top Hat Fireplace Store Inc., says the cold weather has caused quite a stir at his business.
"Our main goal is to make sure that the fireplaces are clean and safe. We want to get the third degree creosote out," Sullivan said.
He says the deep cleaning a chimney sweeper does not only makes fireplaces perform better, but also prevents chimney and house fires.
"What we have here is a dust free vacuum, designed especially for chimney cleaning. The brushes are designed just like the flue tile going up, so we can actually clean the whole chimney from the bottom,” said Sullivan. “The system we use to make the lighter stuff float out and come outside, and the heavier particles will fall down."
Wanda Brignac says she gets her chimney swept to keep her home safe.
"We get it done every couple of years, depending on how much we use it to prevent backup and fires basically," Brignac said.
She says even though her chimney has a screen, you can never be too cautious with the safety of your home.
"We have a screen on the top to keep birds and whatever out, but you never know what can get in, and I've seen back fires, and I don't want one," Brignac said.
For those planning to burn some wood, Sullivan says to protect yourself and your home. He recommends for every cord of wood you burn, have your fireplace cleaned professionally.
"The way it is here in South Mississippi, sometimes you don't get a chance to burn that much wood. Some winters are a little bit colder than others, but it is important people have their chimney cleaned and inspected," Sullivan said.
Also, to keep down on your electricity costs, the power company recommends you keep your fireplace flue closed when not in use.
Heating and air conditioning experts say it's also a good time to make sure you've changed the filter in your home's heating system. Changing that filter is something they say should be done once a month and not only when it's cold.