FIRE! Fireplace/ Chimney Safety

Fireplace/ Chimney Safety

Just like your family we love to cuddle up next to the fire on a chilly day. But there are a few things you should know before lighting up this season.

Which one do you have?

Gas Fireplace is a fireplace that burns either natural gas or propane to create flames and heat.

There are three main types of gas Fireplaces: ‘gas fireplace inserts’ that are installed in the opening of an existing wood burning fireplace and are vented through the existing chimney with a special vent pipe that carries the exhaust to the outside; ‘direct vent gas fireplaces’ which can be vented directly through an exterior wall and do not require a traditional masonry chimney; and ‘vent-free gas fireplaces’ that are designed to operate without the venting of exhaust fumes to the outside.

A pilot light operates continually to ensure piped in gas burns whenever it is present.

Wood Burning Stove/ Inserts:

The two general approaches to meeting the EPA smoke emission limits are non-catalytic and catalytic combustion. Both approaches have proved effective, but there are performance differences. Although most of the stoves on the market are non-catalytic, some of the more popular high-end stoves use catalytic combustion.

In California’s Central Valley there are guidelines as to when you can use you’re your fireplaces: Check Before You Burn.

Chimney Safety Overview

An annual chimney inspection performed by a qualified professional can help prevent carbon monoxide intrusion and chimney fires. These inspections can also identify potential system issues to address them before they become costly. ​ ​

Many agencies and organizations now recognize the importance of annual heating system inspection and maintenance in keeping “the silent killer” at bay. ​

​A well-tuned furnace or boiler will operate efficiently and produce a warm and comfortable home. An overlooked heating system can produce death and heartbreak.

Considering the risks involved when heating systems are neglected – and the benefits of having them properly maintained –

Quoted from our Home Inspectors: Mark Harman & Spencer HarmanWe recommend your chimneys/ fireplaces checked annually by a CSIA Certified Chimney Sweep and swept or repaired as needed.

Family Fire Safety!

Time to check your smoke detectors and Carbon Monoxide Detectors: Replace/ clean/ replace batteries

Plan Ahead! If a fire breaks out in your home, you may have only a few minutes to get out safely once the smoke alarm sounds. Everyone needs to know what to do and where to go if there is a fire.

Your ability to get out of your home during a fire depends on advance warning from smoke alarms and advance planning.

Get your Free (click)  Family Safety Guidelines and a Fire Escape Plan.

Trivia: Did you know that we have inspected over 7500 homes in California’s Central Valley!!!


If you have questions or need further suggestions please give our office a call.

Mark Harman & Spencer Harman

Your California Central Valley Home Inspectors


Compliments of the National Fire Protection Association

Reproduced from NFPA’s website, © NFPA.