7 Benefits of Having a Fireplace in Your Home

Dec 13, 2022

1. Cozy Fires

No other type of heating appliance offers the kind of cozy warmth that you can get from a fire. Whether you have an open hearth, a fireplace insert, a wood stove, or a pellet stove, you can watch the fire dancing while you warm up from the outside cold. Gather your family and friends, or pull up a favorite chair and read a good book.

2. A Romantic Setting

Sitting in front of a fire with the person you love, can be very romantic. Few features in the home offer an instant dreamy escape, like a fireplace. Parents who have trouble finding a babysitter can enjoy a romantic fireside atmosphere, without having to go anywhere.

3. Warmth when the Electricity is Out

When the worst kinds of winter storms hit, electricity is often knocked out. If you have a fireplace, you can still keep warm and have plenty of light. People without fireplaces are freezing cold and waiting for the utility company to restore power.

4. Fire for Cooking

If you have a wood burning stove, you have the added benefit of being able to cook on it. Save money on your utility bill by heating your soup or coffee on the stove as the fire warms your home. Whenever the electricity is out in any season, meals wont be a problem, since you can still cook. Even with an open hearth fireplace, you can roast marshmallows and hot dogs on sticks.

5. Eco-Friendly Heating

Todays wood burning appliances are incredibly efficient, producing plenty of heat to warm your home, meaning you can use less of the fossil-fueled energy supply. Some of the latest models even make it possible to distribute the heat from the appliance throughout the home using existing ductwork. In addition, when you burn wood, you are using a source that has a zero carbon footprint. Some top-of-the-line wood burning appliances produce such a small amount of emissions, they qualify as smokeless heat sources. Wood is a sustainable energy source, unlike fossil fuels.

6. Cut Energy Costs

As electricity costs continue to climb, fireplaces are becoming a popular primary heating source. It costs less to purchase firewood for your efficient wood burning appliance than to heat your home using utilities that depend on fossil fuels.

7. Energy Independence

Fireplaces provide an opportunity to be less dependent upon utility companies. You can take responsibility over your own fuel source, including how much you pay, due to various options as far as where and how to obtain firewood. If you own a lot of heavily wooded property, you may even have an endless supply of free firewood.

As wonderful as fireplaces are, they can also be fire hazards. An important safety measure is to have your chimney cleaned and inspected by a professional chimney sweep every year. Contact us today so that you can enjoy all the great benefits of your fireplace without worry.

Smoking back

There are many fireplaces that seem to smoke back into the house no matter what is done. In our experience, the most common cause is that the fireplace simply needs to be cleaned. This is especially likely if the fireplace has gotten worse over time, that is, the smoking back is worse now than it used to be.

Several other possible causes of smoking back are problems with the damper, chimney cap, grate, firewood, or structural problems with the chimney itself. At Chimney Clean Company, we do a full inspection with every cleaning, or we can also do just the inspection if the chimney doesn’t need to be cleaned. This inspection is designed to reveal any causes of smoking back.

Broken chimneys

In the Bay Area, many chimneys were broken in the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake. Usually, these chimneys are broken at or near the roof line, although sometimes they can be broken further down, even at the ground level.

We are fully licensed masonry contractors. We rebuild broken chimneys. If they are broken at the roof line, this usually entails taking the chimney part of the way down brick by brick, installing steel reinforcing bars, getting an inspection from a city inspector, then rebuilding the chimney back up around the steel rebar.

Missing mortar or damaged bricks

Over time, many chimneys develop places that are missing mortar between bricks, or damaged bricks, either inside the firebox or on the outside of the chimney. These areas can usually be repaired, either by replacing the missing mortar or replacing the bricks themselves. Items such as these can be dangerous because they can allow flames, sparks or hot gases to enter the structure of the house.

Water entry

Sometimes the metal that seals the chimney at the roof, called “flashing”, will come loose or develop leaks. In this case, water sometimes comes into the ceiling of the room and causes water spots and stains on the sheet rock. This flashing should be repaired before the water causes more damage.