Eventually the cold weather will come upon us, and we’ll crave a nice, cozy fire to keep warm. The following are tips to prevent chimney fires found on the New York State Office of Fire Prevention and Control website (www.dhses.ny.gov/ofpc). Nearly all residential fires originating in the chimney are preventable.
- Have your chimney checked every year by a qualified chimney professional
- Burn only well seasoned hardwoods
- Install a chimney cap
- Install a carbon monoxide detector
- Have your chimney sweep ensure that your chimney has an appropriate liner
- Following a violent storm, earthquake, flood or lightening strike, have your chimney inspected for damage inside and out.
- If you have a wood or coal stove, be sure it is installed at least 36 inches away from the wall. Keep combustible materials well away from the stove and chimney connector. Place an approved stove board under the unit to protect the floor from heat and hot coals that might drop out.
- Know what to do in case of a fire. If you suspect a chimney fire, evacuate your home and call 9-1-1.