It’s been proven that fireplaces increase the value of a home quite a bit. People associate a cozy hearth with comfort, family, love, and warmth, and many potential buyers have a fireplace on their future home wish list (and are willing to pay more for a place with one already installed). All in all, having a fireplace put into your home isn’t something you’ll likely regret, and you’ll probably have more luck selling your property down the line, too – it’s a win all around!
That being said, if your structure isn’t well-maintained both by you as a homeowner and by a team of certified professionals, it’ll probably cause more harm than good. No one is going to want to buy a home that needs extensive repair work, and you’ll realize your value actually went down, rather than up.
All in all, it is well worth it to keep your fireplace in tip-top shape, both for the attractiveness of your space and the safety of your family. Learn more about this below, then reach out to our team for the care and attention you deserve. We have the tools and training to help you out with it all!
The Basics Of Your Fireplace
Now, when it comes to operating your system as efficiently as possible, you need to ensure you have a good draft and airflow. This means keeping your system free from creosote and other types of build-up, as well as ensuring no cracks, damaged parts, or other problems are present. There are actually a number of things that could cause your airflow to reverse or not flow smoothly enough, so be sure to get a professional to look things over if you experience problems.
It’s also important to know the parts that make up your system. You should be equipped with a chimney cap, damper, flashing, chimney crown, and chase cover, all of which will play a role in keeping your structure better protected from water, animals, and outside debris.
The best way to ensure everything stays up to par is to always invest in an annual inspection. Giving your sweeps an opportunity to look things over every year helps to ensure you aren’t experiencing any issues that will break down your structure or increase your risk of experiencing something dangerous, such as a gas leak or chimney fire.
Best Way To Use A Wood-Burning Unit
So, using a wood-burning unit requires a little bit of extra maintenance on the part of the homeowner, and it is important to follow a few guidelines to ensure operation goes as smoothly as possible. The first thing to remember is to burn only seasoned wood. That means no trash, no plastic, no paper, and no wet logs. Use only pieces that have been dried out for at least six months or more, otherwise, you’ll have a lot of water to burn through before flames really get going.
Using unseasoned wood also results in a lot of acidic water being dumped into your chimney, which will cause deterioration and encourage creosote accumulation. Not sure your fuel is ready for use? Follow these guidelines:
- Use pieces that are lightweight.
- Smack them together. If they make a hollow, clunking noise, you should be good to go!
- Look for logs that are shorter in length, darker in color, and split at the ends.
- If it has an older, musty smell, that’s actually a good sign! It means the piece isn’t as fresh.
It’s also important to keep your firebox cleared of ash. A thin layer is good for building future fires, but if too much builds up, it could wreak havoc on your fireplace grate and cause more harm than good.
And keep fireplace safety tips in mind, too! Never ever leave a fire unattended, keep pets and young kiddos away from the flames, and have smoke and carbon monoxide detectors installed throughout your home. These devices should be on every level in the house and outside every bedroom.
Interested In A Different Fuel Type?
Now, because wood-burning fireplaces are a bit more hands-on, many want a fuel type that’s easier to manage. That’s where gas and pellet options come in! A gas-fueled appliance is probably the best fit for a family with a busy lifestyle. If you want to be able to come home at the end of a long day and enjoy a cozy fire without having to barely lift a finger, then this is definitely the route for you.
Gas appliances turn on with a quick flip of a switch or push of a button, and when it’s time to shut them down, just turn it off, and you’re good to go. No waiting for flames to die out, no messy ash piles to deal with, and no need to constantly throw more logs on the fire. Gas appliances are also super-efficient, and they will give you strong, consistent heat.
Now, if you simply cannot choose between the convenience of gas and the unbeatable ambiance of a wood-burning unit, then a pellet option may be the best route for you. These use wood shavings, so you still get the authenticity of a real fire, only without the work of constantly refueling. All you do is fill the hopper, and you’re all set!
And we’re here to help you out with any accessories, too! It’s all about finding the right fit and personalizing it to your unique tastes. There are lots of ways you can class up your mantel or the area around your fireplace to truly make it your own. Just ask, and we would be happy to discuss it with you further! Give us a call today.