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Three Levels of Chimney Inspections

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As homeowners, we expect our fireplaces to burn safely and efficiently each time we use them. Most of us don’t understand what is happening between the firebox and the top of the flue – particularly when chimney performance issues arise. Whether you are experiencing a fireplace problem or need regular maintenance, it may be time to schedule a chimney inspection. At Clean Sweeps of Michigan, we offer 3 levels of chimney inspections for all your chimney needs.

The importance of chimney inspections

man inspecting fireplace“A chimney inspection is like an annual dental check-up,” Director of Education for the CSIA Ashley Eldridge said. “It’s preventative maintenance that helps minimize potential hazards.” Chimney inspections are an important part of regular fireplace maintenance. An inspection can identify the source of a venting issue. It also verifies that a chimney is safe for use after a natural disaster and ensure a fireplace system is in good condition before a real estate transaction.

Three levels of chimney inspections

The National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA) states that “Chimneys, fireplaces, and vents shall be inspected at least once a year for soundness, freedom from deposits, and correct clearances. Cleaning, maintenance, and repairs shall be done if necessary.” To meet this standard, the NFPA came up with three levels of inspections to standardize inspections for all chimneys.

Level 1 inspection

Level 1 chimney inspections are the simplest and most common inspection. Chimney sweeps recommend level 1 inspections for regularly maintained fireplace systems. When you are not experiencing performance problems or damages, a level 1 inspection is all you need. During a level 1 chimney inspection, the chimney sweep will inspect the accessible portions of the chimney’s interior and exterior.

Level 2 inspection

Level 2 chimney inspections provide homeowners with a more in-depth look at the condition of their chimney system. During a level 2 chimney inspection, we use technology such as closed-circuit cameras to inspect the entire length of the flue. This gives chimney sweeps the ability to view areas of the chimney that are otherwise inaccessible.

We recommend a level 2 chimney inspections when changes to the fireplace or chimney have been made. We also recommend this inspection when installing a new insert, when you reline the flue, or when you switch fuel sources. You also need a level 2 inspection before buying or selling a home.

Level 3 inspection

Level 3 chimney inspections are the most in-depth and most invasive. You only need this chimney inspections in the event of suspected structural damage such as after a chimney fire or natural disaster. During a level 3 chimney inspection, part of the masonry of the chimney, surrounding walls or ceiling, or chimney cap may need removal to better access the chimney or flue.

Schedule your chimney inspection today!

Whether you are preparing to move, experiencing a performance problem, or want to ensure your chimney is venting safely and efficiently, now is the perfect time to schedule a chimney inspection. Contact Clean Sweeps of Michigan today to schedule your next chimney inspection!