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Precipitation. In the spring, it’s a sweet sound, washing away the dirt and grime of a long winter. In the summer, it’s a much needed element to make the crops, gardens, and lawns stay green and fresh. In the fall, when the harvest is out, it replenishes the moisture level of the soil and helps get things ready for the next growing season. And in the winter, precipitation continues to add moisture to the soil, and if it’s snow, can coat the ground in a blanket of beauty. With all of the good that precipitation does, is there a downside? Well, if you own a home with a chimney, there definitely is a downside to all this precipitation. There are several ways that water can cause major damage to a chimney. Fortunately, there are also ways to make sure that this damage has as little effect as possible, and when you hire Chimney Doctors of Colorado, you know that we’ll do everything possible to make sure that your chimney and fireplace are taken care of.
Although your brick and mortar chimney seems like an indestructible structure, this simple thing, precipitation, can wreak havoc on that structure. First, in a cold Colorado winter, you can count on the freeze-thaw cycle being a problem. Mortar is a porous substance, and when precipitation falls, it gets into those pores. When the cold winter weather hits, this moisture freezes and expands, causing the pores to get bigger. As this cycle continues, the enlarged pores can cause the very structure of your chimney to weaken. This is why we will closely inspect your chimney to make sure that no structural damage is present.
Structural damage is bad, but there are other things to look for when you suspect that water damage is occurring. If you are noticing water stains on the ceiling next to your fireplace, or if the wallpaper or floor boards are soft or weakened, it’s likely that there is a leak somewhere in your chimney. It may be that your dampers or other metal accessories are rusting, or you may just notice that there’s water in the firebox. Any water leaks can cause major damage to your fireplace and to your home.
Water Leakage Solutions
At Chimney Doctors of Colorado, we have several options to take care of your chimney leak problems. We will check out your flashing to make sure they aren’t damaged or loose, and your chimney cap and crown to be sure that no precipitation is able to get in. But for a long-lasting solution, we will also recommend that you have your chimney waterproofed. This process includes applying a solution that will keep water from entering your chimney while allowing moisture that’s already inside the mortar to escape. The best product in the industry is ChimneySaver, and that’s just the product we use to make sure that your home and fireplace are kept dry and strong.
Give Chimney Doctors of Colorado a call today and let us give your chimney a proper waterproofing soon!
There is just something about a fireplace that makes people feel welcome. When you walk in the room out of a snowy Colorado night, if there’s a snapping, crackling fire burning in the fireplace, you’ll get warmed up in no time. A fire brings a cozy ambiance to any room. When you build a fire, it’s easy to just think about laying the wood, lighting some kindling, and enjoying the warmth. But there’s a lot more to the process if you want to continue to enjoy this feeling night after night. You need to make sure that your fireplace system has been cleaned and inspected on a regular basis and that all the parts are working properly so that you can relax by your fireplace with confidence.
If you take a look at your chimney from the outside, you’ll see that on top there is a concrete piece built right on top of the chimney. This is the chimney crown, and it serves the purpose of directing rain water away from the sides of the chimney and the juncture where the chimney meets the roof. This area is covered by the flashing, but a chimney crown is added protection against leaks occurring. But that still leaves the opening on your chimney unprotected. If you’re worried about precipitation sneaking into your house down the top of your chimney, then what you need to be considering is installing a chimney crown. A chimney cap sits on top of the chimney crown, and is uniquely designed with grated sides which allow the smoke to escape while keeping animals, birds, and other debris out of your chimney. The top of it is designed to have solid, sloping sides that direct precipitation onto the crown and onto the roof, where it will glide down to the rain gutters instead of running down your chimney. If your chimney cap needs repair work, give Chimney Doctors of Colorado a call. If you don’t have a chimney cap and you’re looking to purchase one, give us a call as well. We offer a wide range of chimney caps to match your size and style of chimney.
Top Sealing Dampers
Another route to go if you’re looking to keep the precipitation out of your chimney is to add a top-sealing damper. With regular dampers, which are located further down the chimney, you open or close them in order to allow smoke out while you’re using your fireplace or to keep the warmth of your furnace air in your home. A top sealing damper sits directly on top of the chimney crown, and it has cables attached to it so you can open or close it depending on whether your fireplace is in use or not. This allows you to keep precipitation from falling into your chimney, and allows for a better seal than regular dampers. Working together with a screened cap, you’ll have all the protection you need! Call Chimney Doctors of Colorado and we’ll get you set up in no time!
Now that the holiday season is rapidly approaching, you’ve got so many things on your mind. Not to mention, your to-do list is probably about a mile long! One of the great things about the holidays is the opportunity to invite friends and family over to enjoy the holidays with you. But have you noticed that when you start thinking about hosting a celebration of these sorts, you start to notice that your house isn’t looking as spiffy as you’d like it to? All the little flaws and imperfections start looking very obvious! If you’re thinking that you’d like to make some changes, one great place to start is your fireplace. Whether you’re thinking about making big changes or smaller ones, when you start with your fireplace, it’ll make a big difference with the ambiance of the room and your home.
If you want to make a change but would like to start small, then start with something like adding a screen? There are different types of screens to choose from, so you should be able to find something that fits right in with the look you’re going for. If you have a little more time on your hands and are feeling slightly more ambitious, you might want to look at adding some color to your room by painting the fireplace surround. Contrasting colors work well and make your fireplace a focal point of a room.
If you don’t mind spending a little more, you might want to go for a completely different look by adding a new surround. There are many different looks and colors to consider. Tiles come in a wide variety of colors, and you can choose from styles varying from old fashioned to contemporary. Or opt for a traditional look by adding a stone veneer fireplace surround.
A great way to add new style to your fireplace is to replace your current mantel. Did you know that mantels come in different styles? If replacing the mantel itself isn’t an option, try decorations sure to bring life to the holiday season. You can look to the great outdoors for inspiration and add some evergreen boughs and pine cones to the mantel. An old fashioned lantern adds rustic charm, and red bows give the whole look color and cheeriness. Or look to your ornament collection to add a festive, holiday touch. Ornaments from Christmases past will sure to be great conversation starters, while bringing up fond memories. Candles add a warm glow, but remember to keep a close eye on candles that have burned down. A safe alternative to real candles are realistic looking battery operated candles that flicker just like the real thing.
No matter what changes you are looking into making with your fireplace, the chimney company you use shouldn’t be a hard decision. Chimney Doctors of Colorado have been in business since 2003, and in that time, we’ve proven ourselves as a to-go company by offering quality service and sales. Give us a call today and we can offer great advice on changing up the look of your fireplace.
When you think about calling Chimney Doctors of Colorado, you probably think about all the great things they can do for your chimney. Chimney Doctors of Colorado are experts when it comes to chimney inspections and cleanings, and they can find and fix any repairs or rebuilds that need to be undertaken. But that’s not all that we’re good at. We can also make sure that your dryer vents are cleaned out and ready for the winter months.
Why Does Your Dryer Vent Need to be Cleaned?
Your dryer is a wonderful invention which has saved many hours of work for families. Even the best washer doesn’t get all the water out of your clothes, and that’s what the dryer is for! The drum of your dryer has paddles in it, and these paddles carry your clothes from the bottom of the drum to the top. When they get to the top, the wet clothes drop down to the bottom, and the cycle continues. As the drum is turning, warm air is being blown through the drum and through the clothes that is tumbling around. This dries the clothes and fluffs them up at the same time. Another thing that happens, however, is that small particles of fluff or fibers from your clothes are being blown out of your clothes, and those fibers are called lint.
Every time you use your dryer, lint builds up. This is what the lint tray is for, right? This is why it’s so important to clean out the lint tray after every load. The lint tray does catch a lot of the lint, but unfortunately, it isn’t enough. The fact is, some of that lint gets through. These extra particles go down the hose that connects the dryer to the outdoors. Because the air that carries the particles is moist, it makes it easier for those particles to stick to the sides of that hose, and that’s where the trouble comes in. As these particles stick, they can cause a buildup that can start to block the flow of air, making your dryer run less efficiently, which means it will take longer for your clothes to dry. Not only that, but this lint buildup can easily catch a random spark and start a dryer vent fire.
Have Your Vents Cleaned Professionally
It is very important to have your dryer vents cleaned out on a regular basis, and to have them cleaned out by professionals. It may be tempting to do this job yourself, but when you have a professional do the job, you know it’s done right. The professionals to call are Chimney Doctors of Colorado. Our workers are certified by the Chimney Safety Institute of America, and this guarantees that they know how to make sure that your vents are completely cleared out so that you can run your dryer with confidence, knowing that your family will be kept safe from the fear of a dryer vent fire.
It’s the time of year when the weather starts to cool down, the days get shorter, and people start to think about snowfall and hot cocoa. There’s nothing quite as nice as snuggling down in front of a warm, crackling fire on a dark, snowy evening after you’ve spent a long day working, whether outside in the cold weather or in front of a desk. But some people don’t have that luxury. Many people would like to have that comforting experience, but not everyone has the money or the floor space to put in a fireplace. Or sometimes the problem is the support system that would be necessary to hold the chimney needed to vent out the smoke from a wood burning fire. If you’ve been thinking about adding a fireplace to your home, a good option to think about is a prefabricated chimney.
Benefits of a Prefabricated Chimney
One of the biggest benefits of installing a prefabricated chimney in your home is the weight of it. Rather than building a traditional fireplace from brick and mortar, which requires extensive footing to support it, a prefab chimney is made of metal and comes from the factory as a complete unit that can be installed without needing a substantial support system. The chimney and fireplace come as a complete system that are made to go together. It is important that this system be installed by professionals, and the professionals at Chimney Doctors of Colorado are the ones to get the job done right.
Prefabricated chimney systems are quick to install, especially when the installation process is done by Chimney Doctors of Colorado. Another benefit of installing a prefab chimney is price. These systems are much less expensive than a brick and mortar system, and spending less is something that makes every homeowner happy!
Another benefit of prefabricated chimneys is that they are constructed with less seams and joints, which means there are less places that could be weak and leaky. Therefore, you can rest easy knowing that it is less likely that smoke and exhaust will leak into your home.
Safety and Functionality
Because prefabricated chimneys are made in the factory, they are tested in the factory for safety and efficiency. This means that you can use your new fireplace knowing that your family will be safe and warm, and your wallet won’t take a hit from higher heating costs. Because it’s made from inexpensive, lightweight materials, you don’t have to worry about overspending on the initial cost, either. Not only this, but when you have your new appliance installed by the professionals at Chimney Doctors of Colorado, it will last 10 to 20 years. Additionally, replacement is an easy, as well as inexpensive, process.
If you’re looking to install a new prefabricated chimney system before the holidays hit, give us a call today. We’ll have you relaxing in front of your new fireplace system before you know it!
Just like other industry, the chimney industry has its own terminology. Terms like dampers, chimney crowns, efflorescence, creosote, and spalling are words you’ll hear when you get your chimney inspected and cleaned. Another term you may hear is tuckpointing, or repointing. It’s important for you to understand these terms, especially when it comes to having work done on your chimney. No one wants to have unnecessary work done, but at Chimney Doctors of Colorado, the only repair work we suggest is necessary repairs.
When we come inspect your chimney, one of the things we look at is the condition of the structure. We’ll make sure that the bricks and mortar are secure and in good condition. Although your masonry may seem like it’s built to lasting for generations, just like everything else, your chimney can suffer damages from continual exposure to wind, rain, sleet,hail, and other types of bad weather. Precipitation, in particular, is very bad on your mortar and bricks.
Bricks and mortar are porous materials, and when precipitation hits, the moisture gets into the pores. When the cold Colorado winter hits, that precipitation freezes and expands, and that causes the pores to expand and get even bigger. This process is called the freeze-thaw cycle. When the pores get bigger, it can cause the structure of your chimney to weaken.
Signs of Weak Bricks and Mortar
If you look around your house at the base of the chimney, you may see white flakes and crumbles. This is called spalling, and it’s a good sign that you have problems with the mortar. The white stuff is actually crumbling mortar that are flaking off the existing structure of your chimney. Spalling is not good, as this can weaken the integrity of your chimney system.
If you’ve noticed spalling, it’s time to give Chimney Doctors of Colorado a call. We have the solution for it: tuckpointing. Tuckpointing is the process of removing the old, weakened mortar out of the space between the bricks and replacing it with new, strong mortar. This may sound like an easy process, but it’s best left to the professionals at Chimney Doctors of Colorado. We have the proper tools to handle the job, and we also have the experience of matching new mortar to the existing mortar, so the result of your newly repaired chimney is identical.
Make sure to call in the CSIA certified professionals at Chimney Doctors of Colorado for your tuckpointing needs. We’re dedicated to fixing your chimney and making it strong so you can enjoy your fireplace all winter long and for years to come!
Winter is right around the corner, and it’s time to start doing all those things you need to do to get things ready for the cold weather. You’ll want to make sure the furnace is running. If it isn’t, then have a technician take a look at it. Put a winter weather survival kit, including bottled water, a blanket, some flashlights, candles and matches, some snacks, and emergency flashers in your car so that you’re ready if you get caught in a sudden Colorado snowstorm. Check the antifreeze and the battery in your car as well. There are also some things you should do to make sure that your fireplace is ready for the increased winter usage.
You know that when the snow starts to fly, there’s nothing cozier than snuggling up in front of a crackling fire. If you haven’t already done so, it’s important that you have your chimney inspected and cleaned before you start using your fireplace for the winter season. When you call the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) certified professionals at Chimney Doctors of Colorado, you can rest assured that we’ll be giving your chimney more than just a cursory glance. One thing that we’ll be looking for is creosote buildup. This smelly substance builds up over the course of a winter’s use, sticking to the interior of your chimney and causing more trouble than just smelling bad. It is highly flammable, and even as little as an eighth of an inch buildup can catch a spark and cause a chimney fire to occur. We’ll also look for any damage that may have occurred over the course of last winter’s use, cracks to the flue lining, signs of mortar damage, damage to the firebox, or loose flashings. We want you to be safe throughout the winter fireplace months, and the best way to ensure your safety is to do a thorough inspection and cleaning before you start to use your fireplace this fall.
Pick the Right Firewood
Another way to prepare for winter fire burning is to make sure you have the right kind of firewood available. When you are purchasing firewood, there are several things that you can do to make sure the wood you pick is going to burn hot and clean, without being smoky or causing excessive creosote buildup.
Well-cured wood will be lighter, almost gray in appearance, and have cracks running out to the edges. The bark falls off more easily on well cured wood as well. Smell the wood. Well-cured wood will not have as strong or sappy of a smell. Hit two pieces of wood together. If the wood is well cured, it should have a hollow, ringing sound rather than a dull thunk. Picking the correct firewood will make your winter fireplace use a more pleasurable experience. As the temperatures cool down, you’ll be using your fireplace more. Plan ahead to stay safe and warm during the winter season.
Have you ever found yourself sitting on your couch on a cold winter evening, watching the snow fall through the window and hearing the wind blow and found yourself wishing you had a cozy, crackling fire to warm yourself by? The problem is, installing a fireplace may not be the route you want to take because of the time and cost that can be associated with it. But there is a way to get the warmth and comfort of a crackling fire without having to go to great lengths. In fact, when you call Chimney Doctors of Colorado, our fireplace and heating experts can walk you through the advantages of the three different types of stoves we offer: pellet, wood, or gas burners.
Wood Burning Stove
To really replicate the feel of a wood fire, you might want to look at purchasing a wood burning stove. One of the great things about a wood burner is that, if you have trees on your property or a reliable source for lumber on a relative or friend’s property, you can have a ready supply of wood that you can access for free. All it takes is some muscle power during the summer and time to dry out your fuel source and you can have plenty of wood stored up to last all winter. It’s a great fix if you’d like to turn the heat down in the house and just cozy up in the living room around the wood burning stove. Another plus is your wood burning stove will burn even when the electricity is off.
Gas Burning Stove
If you like the idea of a fire but not the effort it takes to gather wood, gas might be just the thing for you. When it comes to convenience, it doesn’t get much better than this. Just a flip of a switch and you’ll have a nice fire burning. Another great thing about a gas burning stove is that you don’t have to keep adding fuel to the fire to keep it burning hot.
Pellet Burning Stove
If you want the convenience of a gas stove with the feel of a wood burner, then look into purchasing a pellet burning stove. With a flip of a switch, you can have a fire burning that is fueled by pellets made from processed wood. You purchase the pellets in bulk and they are fed into the stove to provide an efficient, steady burn.
When you purchase a stove from Chimney Doctors of Colorado and have our experts install your stove, you can be sure that you’ll get great service and your installation will be carried out according to any codes and regulations to ensure the safety of you and your family. If you hire us to take care of your heat stove needs, you can rest assured that we will help you keep your stove running for the long run!
Although your chimney seems like an indestructible structure, built to last for many generations, in truth there are many things that can break down over the course of time due to wear and tear. It seems as though it’s a simple structure, but there are also many parts that can break down. When you’ve been in business for fifteen years and counting like Chimney Doctors of Colorado has been, you see many things that need repair. Not only have we seen things, we’ve repaired them!
You may have noticed over the summer that your chimney was emitting some nasty odors. If this is the case, it could very well be that you have a big creosote buildup that needs to be dealt with. When you burn a fire in your fireplace, there are several byproducts that are released through the resulting smoke. These byproducts include carbon monoxide, methane, sulfur dioxide, methyl chloride, and acetic acid. But sometimes, when the warm smoke hits the cool surface at the top of your chimney, it can condense and form a nasty substance called creosote. This material has a strong odor, especially in the warm, humid summertime, but throughout the rest of the year as well. We get rid of that odor by giving your chimney a great cleaning every year, which is how often the Chimney Safety Institute of America suggests you should have your chimney inspected and cleaned.
Speaking of creosote, the odor isn’t the biggest problem creosote buildup can cause. More hazardous is the fact that creosote is extremely flammable. Even as little as an eighth of an inch buildup can cause a chimney fire if a stray spark catches in it. Although it seems like this would be an obvious occurrence, according to the CSIA, a chimney fire often goes unnoticed. This is especially dangerous because the chimney fire may cause damage to your chimney without you even knowing it exists. When we do your annual inspection, damage from a chimney fire is one thing we’ll be on the lookout for. We have the experience to uncover the damage and the expertise to repair it.
Another area of your chimney that may need repair is the flashing. If you look on your roof, you may notice that there are steel sheets covering the junction of your chimney and the roof. This is the flashing, and it is specially designed to keep your chimney leak free. Trouble is, these strips are susceptible to damage from high winds and precipitation. They can become rusted or cracked or can blow loose in strong winds. We’ll make sure to check your flashing so that your home stays dry in intemperate weather.
We’ll Do It All
No matter what type of repair your chimney may need, at Chimney Doctors of Colorado, we know how to repair it! Give us a call before and you’ll be fixed up by the time snow flies!
There are so many things to take care of during the summer that we can forget about the really important appointments that need to be made on an annual basis. You know it’s important to get your dentist appointment in, your annual physical, and an oil change for your car at three to five thousand miles. You use your teeth constantly, you can’t do the things you want to if you’re not in good shape physically, and you use your car enough that you want to make sure it can get you going where you need to be when you need. But, because you don’t use your fireplace during the summer, it’s easy to forget that you need to have your chimney inspected and cleaned annually.
Why Have it Cleaned
If you do a quick visual inspection of your chimney, both inside and out, you may think that it looks just fine. But there are things that an untrained eye just can’t detect. That’s what we’re here for! When you call Chimney Doctors of Colorado, you know that our technicians are certified by the Chimney Safety Institute of America. The CSIA recommends that you have your chimney inspected on an annual basis. When you use your fireplace a lot, more creosote will build up, and that’s a big fire hazard. Creosote develops when the chemicals that are released through combustion along with moisture drift upward and condense near the top of the chimney, where the brick is cooler. This substance is highly flammable and can catch a stray spark or ember easily, resulting in a serious chimney fire. Our trained chimney sweeps will take care of your creosote build up so that your chances of chimney fire are greatly reduced.
Make Sure No Repairs Are Needed
Another reason it’s important to have your chimney inspected is because chimney fires can occur without the homeowner even being aware of it. If this is the case, your chimney might have structural damage that could be a dangerous situation. There could be cracks in the mortar or the flue liner that allow gases from the smoke to re-enter your home. These gases include carbon monoxide, and that can cause serious health concerns such as headaches, nausea, dizziness, and other flu-like symptoms. If left undetected, this can even lead to loss of consciousness and death. Having us come in to check for necessary repairs not only helps your fireplace work more efficiently, it also may save you from unnecessary doctor bills or worse!
Right now, our busy season has not hit, so if you give us a call, we’ll be able to fit you right into our schedule. If you don’t want to have to schedule at someone else’s convenience, make sure to call us today!