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Santa's Holiday Chimney Checklist

December 12, 2016

It’s definitely beginning to feel a lot like Christmas in Kansas City!  Colder nights can provide the perfect opportunity to warm up with friends and family around a roaring fireplace.  But before you get out the marshmallows and graham crackers, or Santa shimmies down to your stockings hung with care, it’s important to complete a quick safety checklist of your fireplace and chimney.


  • Check the brickwork in your fireplace for wear. Any crumbling bricks or mortar might be a sign of settling.
  • Check the damper—does it open and close easily?
  • Shine a flashlight into your chimney from top to bottom. In most cases, there will be more soot in the bottom of the chimney.  If you see more than ¼ inch of soot, call a chimney sweeper to have it cleaned.
  • Make sure the flue is not blocked by debris or wild animal habitats. Shining a light into the chimney should provide good information, but you can run a brush through the flue to get any spider webs or bits of nest that might have accumulated over the warmer months.
  • Test your carbon monoxide detector to make sure it is in optimal working condition, especially if you have a gas fireplace. Gas fumes are odorless and colorless, and can be fatal for your family.  If you don’t have a carbon monoxide detector, make that your top priority before throwing any logs on the fire. 


  • Visually inspect the chimney. Is it leaning?  Are there any chipped bricks or masonry joints?  If your chimney is made of factory-built metal, look for corrosion, stains, or loose sections.
  • Check your chimney cap to make sure it is free of debris. Make sure the mesh screen has no holes and is attached securely.  A good chimney cap with a mesh screen will keep animals out while also shielding your roof from embers and sparks.
  • Check flashing around the chimney to make sure it is secure. If you see areas of dampness or stains around your chimney area inside your house, it’s a sign that your chimney flashing needs to be repaired.

If you find items on your checklist that require professional attention, the experts at RSG construction are happy to help.  Give us a call today at 816-866-4235 or just click HERE to schedule your complimentary consultation.  From our family to yours, we wish you a very happy and safe holiday season!

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