The fireplace can make the room look extremely inviting especially on a cold, winter evening. In addition to adorning a room, a fireplace can reduce the heating bills of the house considerably. Therefore, a fireplace is an energy-efficient heating source. Also, a fireplace increases the resale value of a house.
A traditional fireplace is accompanied by a chimney. The fireplace should be cleaned and maintained appropriately in order to ensure that they are functional. The right elements should be installed to ensure that the setup is complete and is fully and properly operational.
Chimneys prevent the emission of harmful gasses and smoke into the house. The chimney cap plays an important role in the appropriate functioning of the chimney. Let’s take a look at some of the reasons why you should install a chimney cap.
- Prevents Rainwater from Damaging the Flue
One of the primary reasons of installing a chimney cap is to prevent rainwater from falling into the chimney. Such accumulation of moisture can damage the flue liners which are usually made of stainless steel. If the flue liner gets damaged, the smoke and fumes that are emitted through the chimney can travel into other parts of the house, thus increasing the possibility of a fire.
The moisture can also cause mildew and mold in the chimney, thus causing major damage to the bricks. It can also damage the walls and ceilings around the fireplace. The moisture can also get seeped into the brickwork of the fireplace and cause it to flake. Moisture can lead to cracks on the bricks of the chimney.
- Keeps Debris Out
Without a chimney cap, debris like leaves, twigs, dust, dead animals etc. can fall into the chimney, thus creating a blockage. As a result, this can result in malfunctioning of the chimney. Dead animals and trash blocking the chimney will cause the smoke and toxic gasses released from the fireplace to get expelled into the room instead of escaping through the chimney. This can be quite dangerous and result in chimney fire.
Apart from that, raccoon, snakes, squirrels, small critters etc. can climb into the chimney in search of warmth in the cold weather conditions. They may find it difficult to get out and may end up dead inside the chimney. Dead animals blocking the chimney can result in unpleasant odor. Also, birds and small animals can build nests in the chimney, thus making it difficult for the fireplace to function properly. Installing a chimney cap can prevent all of this from happening.
- Prevents Downdraft
A downdraft is caused when the wind blows in a certain direction. Such a downdraft can move through the chimney and into the house, thus causing the fireplace to malfunction. A downdraft can cause your house to fill up with smoke. A chimney cap can prevent such unwanted drafts into the house. Installing a chimney cap can also prevent downdraft of cold air through the chimney and the fireplace into the house. As a result, your house will stay warm during the cold weather conditions.
- Prevent Possibility of Fire
Sometimes, the lit embers and sparks moving up through the chimney from the fireplace can land on the roof. If any combustible material on the roof comes in contact with these sparks or embers, it can quickly catch fire. However, with a chimney cap installed appropriately, such a scenario can be prevented. The chimney caps that are widely available usually come with a wire mesh. This mesh deflects the sparks from falling on the roof, thus preventing any possibility of fire.
Installing a Chimney Cap
There are various kinds of chimney caps available that you can install. That being said, it is important to ensure that the chimney cap you choose fits the dimensions of the opening of the chimney. You can opt for decorative, affordable or expensive chimney caps. Also, chimney caps are usually made of galvanized steel, stainless steel or copper.
It is important to get the chimney cap installed by a professional. You should also ensure that the chimney and the fireplace are cleaned thoroughly. This will help in keeping the chimney running in good condition. If you live in Crawley Down, you can consider hiring a chimney sweep at Crawley Down for this purpose.
Contributed by: http://www.jamesthesweep.co.uk/