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How to Repair a Deteriorating Fireplace

fireplace-brick-fireWe’re getting excited for the cooler weather to come! It’s almost time to light a fire, gather with loved ones, and feel the cozy warmth of a naturally heated living space. But you are probably a lot less excited about that joy of the coming seasons if your fireplace is not in good shape, if you’ve noticed that parts are not working properly or it’s started to deteriorate.

We want to help you learn what to do about a problematic fireplace. However, we will stress that most fireplace repairs, especially those that carry over to your chimney, should be handled by the pros. Please, feel free to reach out to our professional technicians for more information.

Fixing the Damper

The damper within your chimney is the part that you (hopefully) open before you start a fire and the part you close afterwards (to keep your home as energy-efficient as possible). Eventually, you may notice that the damper won’t open and close any longer. This may not be such a serious issue!

Repairing the damper can take little time and may be a DIY-suitable project. However, if you run into any trouble, contact a technician.

First, clean out the fireplace as completely as possible. Then, clean out the damper, which is located up near the top of the fireplace. You’ll likely need to lay on your back to do this, which means it’s so important to wear a mask, protective glasses, and other protective materials. If the damper appears to be stuck, all you have to do is add some WD-40 and clean off any additional debris on the damper. In some cases, though, it will need replacement.

Replacing the Mesh in a Fireplace Screen

Sometimes, you are worried about using the fireplace because of an issue with the mesh screen you use to protect your home. You certainly shouldn’t use your fireplace if it seems risky. But you may be able to simply ask for a cut of screen the same size as your old one from the local hardware store.

True Deterioration of a Fireplace Needs Major Work

Here’s the thing: if deterioration within your chimney is serious, and if the mortar is not held together as it should be, you need to have a professional take a look. Deteriorated brick and mortar will require complex tuckpointing that an amateur simply cannot handle. Professionals have the right tools for the job. And this is important: worn-down materials make it more likely that a fire can spread to the outside of a home.

It May Be Time for a Renewal

You might want to consider more “drastic” measures. All in all, it will be better if you replace your fireplace when it looks as if it’s falling apart, especially if you’re also having trouble with the chimney. A fireplace insert is likely to be your best bet. Think of a fireplace insert like a new firebox that’s inserted directly into the old one. It meets current manufacturing standards for safety, so you can trust its performance!

For fireplace repair in Minneapolis, MN, reach out to the team at 2nd Generation Chimneys, Inc.

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