The majority of homeowners with wood-burning appliances understand the need for an annual chimney cleaning and inspection. However, many homeowners with oil-burning appliances don’t realize that their appliances rely on a chimney for proper venting of the exhaust, too. Granted, oil- and gas-fueled appliances may not produce the soot that wood-burning appliances do; however, they more than make up for it by producing some highly corrosive substances that can do real damage to the inside of their respective chimneys. In many cases, these substances can wreak havoc on the chimney without producing any external symptoms until the problem has gotten so far out of hand that it creates extremely dangerous conditions within your home whenever the appliance is in use. We implore you to avoid this type of thinking.

CO Poisoning from Oil Burning Furnace - Asheville NC

Cleaning Your Oil-Burning Appliances

The best time of year to have your oil and gas chimney cleaned is in the spring, after the heating season has officially reached its end. During the winter, your gas- and oil-fueled furnaces are subjected to long running cycles that produce soot and other substances that can cling to the sides of your chimney. The accumulation of these substances will restrict the flow of the flue gases (nitrogen, carbon dioxide and water vapor mostly). The combustion process also produces carbon monoxide, which is an extremely dangerous gas that needs to be vented properly for the safety of everyone in your home. If allowed to spill back into your home instead of going up the chimney, the potential of individuals in your home falling victim to carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning is undeniable.

Common Misconception

A big misconception on the part of many homeowners is that the furnace service company takes care of the chimney maintenance as part of their process. The service company may shovel out the base of the chimney and/or brush out the connector pipes if you’re lucky, however, they won’t give the chimney a thorough cleaning. Most furnace technicians fail to mention anything about the chimney, leaving homeowners with a false sense of security, as they believe that everything is fine, which may or may not be the case. This misconception can have dire consequences for your home and your family; your chimney could suffer significant damage while your family could fall victim to CO poisoning.

The Importance of an Annual Cleaning and Inspection

An annual inspection and cleaning by a CSIA-certified chimney sweep can help find problems before they get out of hand, as they’ll be able to offer advice and recommend measures to make your entire system function more safely and efficiently. Gaskets could potentially wear out unbeknownst to you, thereby leading to poisonous and deadly carbon monoxide being released inside your home. A few dollars spent on corrective measures now could save thousands in expensive system repairs down the road.

Environmental Chimney Service, serving the Asheville and Hendersonville areas in North Carolina, understands that the safety of your family includes protecting them from any potential danger from fire and illnesses caused by not keeping your chimney appliance in top working condition. Many chimneys venting gas or oil furnaces may appear to be in fine condition on the outside. But inside it could be a completely different situation. Yesterday’s chimneys weren’t designed for venting today’s more energy-efficient furnaces. However, we have myriad options available for updating and maintaining these types of furnace flues. Call us today or click here to schedule your appointment online.