During the colder months of the year a Fireplace is a necessity for many people. A fireplace supplements heat, saving money on energy bills and adds aesthetics to a home. Fireplaces bring joy to those who have and use them. However, they can also be dangerous if they are not used correctly. A common problem that many people find with their fireplaces when the seasons change is their fireplace is not drafting properly.  This problem can come from many reasons but there are a few tips that can help prevent this from happening.

Always ensure that the damper is fully open while lighting the fireplace. Keeping the damper open during use is essential as it will allow the smoke to escape the fireplace and travel out the chimney. While it may not be necessary to keep it fully open during use of the fireplace it should remain open as long as there are hot embers in the fireplace. While it is crucial to keep the damper open during use it is also very important to keep it closed while the fireplace is not in use. Keeping the damper closed during the cold months when the fireplace is not in use will stop warm air from going up the chimney. It is also important to keep it closed during warmer months to keep air conditioned air from escaping through the chimney.

Another opening in fireplaces that need to be adjusted accordingly is the outside air kit. The outside air kit pulls air from outside to help fuel your fire and is crucial for having sufficient air in the fireplace for the fire to burn. When the fire does not have enough air it will not burn hot and will create more smoke that will potentially back draft into the living space. Like the damper it is important to keep the air kit closed when the fireplace is not in use as it will prevent wasting energy.

If the damper and the air kit are both open and drafting issues continue the chimney or fireplace may need to be inspected by a certified chimney professional.

-Garrett Moss