Preparing Your Chimney for a Visit from Santa Claus
The chances of an actual Santa Claus visiting your home and sliding down your chimney on Christmas Eve this year are pretty slim. But if you take care of your chimney with the idea that Santa will, in fact, visit, you’ll be doing the exact things necessary to ensure a very safe and high-performing chimney.
Here’s how to get your chimney ready for Santa just in case.
Santa’s not getting any smaller as the decades pass, so give him a smooth path down the flue by having all obstructions removed. Nests made by birds, squirrels, snakes, rodents and similar varmints along with leaves and twigs from trees and other debris can stack up inside a chimney and hinder not only Santa but also the proper drafting of smoke and dangerous toxins out of your fireplace.
Clean the flue
If your fireplace burns wood, you’ll want to schedule service with a certified chimney sweep to clean creosote out of your chimney.
Creosote is formed every time a wood fire burns, and it doesn’t take long for a sufficient amount of this sticky substance to build up to a level that it could erupt into a serious chimney fire. Plus, Santa doesn’t need a bunch of gooey brown junk all over his snazzy outfit.
Inspections and Repairs
Santa is big, and chimneys are narrow. He may have to do a lot of squeezing and pushing to get down into your house, and that could cause damage to already compromised bricks and mortar. A certified chimney inspector will look closely at your masonry, and if there are cracks or crumbling areas, he or she will initiate repairs to strengthen the structure. Leaky chimneys are a big problem, but professional services can repair any kind of leak before significant water damage happens.
Go easy on the smoke
If you’ll be burning a low fire come Christmas Eve, you’ll want to make it as un-smoky as possible. It wouldn’t be nice to make Santa breathe huge billows of smoke as he shimmies down the chimney. (How Santa can go down a chimney with the fireplace burning is one of life’s mysteries that’s best to not try to figure out.)
Tips for burning fires safely and with less smoke:
- Use only dry (seasoned) wood. Wet wood makes a lot of smoke.
- Keep the chimney clean so there will be plenty of air for drafting.
- Never burn anything except wood – don’t use lighter fluid, charcoal starter, cardboard, furnishings, plastic, packing material or anything else in your fireplace.
- Make sure your fireplace damper works correctly and is fully open when burning a fire.
Here we talked about getting your chimney ready for a visit from Santa. But any time of year is the right time to perform smart chimney maintenance and service. Just think of Santa coming down your chimney, and you’ll keep your chimney clean and safe all year long.
Black Moose Chimney & Stove of Antrim, NH, is here to make sure you have a safe, Santa-friendly chimney. Call us at (603) 525-7905 for certified chimney sweep, chimney inspection and chimney repair services.