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A fireplace is a great way to keep your house warm in winter. But it does require regular maintenance. Without the proper care, your chimney can pose a threat to your home. Here are the most common chimney dangers in Arlington, VA, and how to prevent them:

Flue Damage

The flue is the duct that carries smoke and other fumes outside. The lining is subject to high heat, so it can crack from the stress. Cracks in the flue can cause smoke, carbon monoxide and other gases to travel into your home, creating a serious fire hazard and health risk. Schedule a yearly chimney inspection to ensure that the flue is intact. Also, install a stainless steel liner, which is more durable than a traditional clay liner.


Creosote is fuel combustion byproduct made up of tar and soot. It can quickly build up in the flue, and it’s highly flammable. To reduce your risk of a house fire, you should have your chimney professionally cleaned and inspected every year.


Leaves, branches, dirt and other debris can become major chimney dangers if they build up for too long. These materials can obstruct the chimney, preventing harmful fumes from leaving your home. Dangerous gases like carbon monoxide may blow back into the room if they can’t get outside, which can lead to serious and potentially life-threatening health consequences. To prevent debris from entering your chimney, install a chimney cap.

Microbial Growth

Chimneys tend to be warm and humid, so they’re a perfect environment for microbial growth. These spores can contaminate the air in your home and cause unpleasant respiratory symptoms for you and your family. Chimney caps can reduce moisture and prevent microbial growth, and regular cleaning can eliminate spores before they multiply.

Keeping your chimney in good condition is critical for your health and safety. Chimney dangers most often occur when the fixture has been neglected for a long time, so the best way to reduce your risk is to schedule annual cleanings and inspections. Contact Rooftop Chimney Sweeps today to schedule your next chimney cleaning or repair service.

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