Chimney Fire Hazard You Can Avoid

Performance Property Real Estate Question

Q: I just bought a home with a fireplace–I’ve never had one before. What do I need to do to maintain it? Eddie, Westwood, NJ

A: Whenever wood is burned in a fireplace, smoke goes up the chimney and a substance called creosote is deposited in the flue lining. Creosote is a mixture of tar and soot that can cause a chimney fire. Whether you’re burning wood or pellets or gas, smoke goes up the chimney and creosote builds up over time. Creosote is EXTREMELY flammable which is why it creates such a big fire risk. You can prevent chimney fires by cleaning your chimney–you can hire someone to do it or you can buy a chimney brush and fiberglass rod and clean out the creosote buildup yourself. Chimneys should be cleaned every year. If there is no creosote build up in your chimney, then there is nothing to catch fire. Thanks for your question, Eddie.

For more real estate tips and information visit my blog at