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Didn’t know your chimney could catch fire? First off what is “creosote”? Chimneys are designed to withstand the high temperatures that are generated from your fireplace. What Causes Chimney Fires and How to Prevent Them Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Creative Commons. When this happens, the smoke will build in the flue pipe until it’s forced to exhaust through the fireplace or stove. -NFPA September 2017 Home Structure Fires Report . Unwanted Blazes – A Fire in Your Chimney . This is not a rare situation considering that even squirrels can sometimes get trapped in the chimney. A chimney technician or sweep should check the inside of the chimney appliance, and remove any obstructions from it. It’s helpful to understand exactly what causes a chimney fire, so you can better understand how to prevent it. Chimney fires occur when creosote buildup or other debris catches fire inside the chimney. … Slow-burning chimney fires are often not visible, but they can reach temperatures that cause just as much damage to the chimney and other parts of the house as larger fires… Creosote is formed whenever wood burns. Existing creosote buildup can also make the situation worse.. Burning unseasoned wet wood . Creosote is a highly flammable black or dark brown residue that is a by-product of combustion. The main causes for chimney fires include infrequent sweeping or cleaning and wrong appliance sizing. Stage three creosote is the most hazardous since the tar-like fuel is stuck like glue to the chimney lining, which feeds the fire continuously. CHUCKEY, Tenn. (WJHL) – A Chuckey family was unable to stay in their home after a fire caused by a stopped up chimney damaged their house. Although, chimenys are still suseptable to fires under certain condtions. Chimney Fires – Causes And What To Do If They Occur. This is a very vital question to ask as knowledge obtained can greatly help in preventing a chimney fire outbreak. Before lighting a fire… A slow-burning chimney fire doesn't get enough air or have fuel to light up the sky, but the temperatures they reach are very high nonetheless. Your sweep may have specific maintenance recommendations depending on how you use your fireplace or stove. Causes. Smaller chimney fires, over time, can cause serious damage inside your flue and to the smoke chamber, which is the drafting portal that sits just above your fireplace. Fires in your chimney are caused by a build up of creosote, which is highly flammable and can ignite if a stray spark travels up the flue or the fire is burning at an extremely high temperature. Here are 11 clues of a chimney fire. Obstruction in the Chimney. About $53,000 in damage was done to the home. These residues form a highly-combustible substance called creosote. Common Causes of Chimney Fires. Before building a fire in your wood-burning fireplace, make sure to open the damper completely. December 6, 2020 9:33 pm Beret Leone Minnesota News, Top Stories. What Causes a Chimney Fire? What Causes Chimney Fires? What is a chimney fire? Dimmitt said that with chimney fires like Ray’s, there's lot of investigating to be done to determine the actual cause. If these are allowed to accumulate the heat from a fire can cause them to ignite, causing a chimney fire. Tips to reduce the risk of chimney fire. 4 – Damper & Chimney Cap Problems. Your first line of defense is always prevention. Here are the most common ways a fire might start in your chimney. Chimney fire causes extensive damage to SE Rochester home . Chimney Fires: Causes, Effects & Evaluation Prepared by Chimney Safety Institute of America Chimney Fire Education and Research Task Force Jerry E. Isenhour, Sr., Chairman James P. Brewer Ashley Eldridge P.C. They can also cause a lot of damage if left unchecked! According to a press release … This substance can be crusty, tar-like, sticky or hardened. These fires can burn for a long period of time, as the built up creosote acts as fuel to sustain a slow burning chimney fire. What causes chimney fires? Creosote may be eliminated with chimney sweep brushes or remover chemicals. It can also cause the joints of the chimney pipe or flue to crack and spread the fire in attics, etc. When wood burns, it creates smoke, which goes up the chimney and leaves the house into the surrounding air. These slow-burners can cause … But it does highlight the dangers associated with having a fireplace at home. If there’s enough of it—and the internal flue temperature is high enough or sparks or flames reach it—a chimney fire can start. Chimney fires, and subsequently chimneys, share certain common characteristics and can be counted on to behave within predictable parameters. The process begins with the incomplete combustion of fuel in the attached appliance, usually a wood or coal stove, or open fire.The unburned volatiles are heated to the vapor state but not consumed due to a lack of adequate heat and oxygen within the appliance. So far in the fall of 2015 we’ve already read about two chimney fires in the western suburbs of Chicago. Chimney Fire Prevention. The first took place Oct. 20, 2015, in an Elgin home in which wood and insulation inside the brick caught fire. Overnight burning or smouldering wood for long periods in wood stoves . Knowledge is key to reducing the potential of a chimney fire happening in your home. More than 30% of homes in the United States have fireplaces. Most common causes of chimney fires. Chimney fires were the most common type of heating fire. This section includes information on preventing chimney fires and what to do if one occurs. Clean chimneys don’t catch fire. What causes chimney fires? Spark guards prevent hot embers from escaping the chimney and potentially igniting nearby combustibles, such as rooftops. When a fire is lit flammable deposits build up in the chimney and flue. If this doesn’t help, there may be an obstruction near the top of your chimney, or your chimney … Creosote is a by-product of burning that coats the inside of your chimney that needs to be removed during regular annual chimney cleaning by chimney sweeps. Some kinds of creosote will catch fire more easily than others, but all kinds are unable to cause a chimney fire once a sweep has cleaned them out. It might seem ironic, but unwanted chimney fires are actually very common! But while smoke is gaseous, it often does not remain that way for very long, as it cools quickly and condenses to the inside of the chimney. If the chimney is obstructed, it will restrict the airflow. 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