As temperatures continue to drop, you might find yourself using your fireplace more frequently. Fireplace maintenance is incredibly important for the safety of you and your home.
For example, did you know fireplace coals can stay hot long enough to start a fire up to three days after use? Because of that, you should always wait at least that long before removing the ashes. Here are some more helpful tips for keeping your fireplace safe and enjoyable for your family from our friends at HGTV.
HGTV Maintenance and Safety Tips
- Keep it short – fireplaces should not be used for longer than five hours.
- Glass doors open, screen door shut. Keep the glass doors open to allow air to be drawn up to cool the chimney. But keep the screen closed to prevent sparks from jumping onto the carpeting, according to the article.
- Never leave a fire unattended, especially when children are in the house.
- Use fireplace-specific tools for handling burning logs, never use your hands.
- Clean glass doors when they are cool and scrape off any large deposits with a razor blade. Mix a cup of vinegar with a gallon of water and spray or sponge onto doors and wipe it away with newspaper or some other lint-free cloth.
- Never use a vacuum to clean up ashes, since there still might be live coals in them.
- It’s a good idea to have a certified chimney sweep inspect and clean your fireplace at least once a year or about every 80 fires.
- Clean the firebox, which is the area where the logs burn, at least once a week during the months you use it. Leave about an inch of ash because it acts as insulation, allowing the coals to heat faster and retain the heat easier. Keep the firebox completely clean during the months when the fireplace is not in use.
At D.R Horton we care about the safety of you and your family. As always, it’s good to call in the pros for anything out of your comfort zone and to educate you on proper maintenance for your specific fireplace.