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A chimney damper prevents conditioned (warmed or cooled) house air from escaping through the flue when you’re not using the fireplace. You need to open the damper when you start a fire to allow for proper airflow and let the smoke out.
Does a chimney need a damper?
Your fireplace probably has a damper. And while older wood-burning fireplaces can function safely without a damper (gas fireplaces cannot), a chimney without a damper is just a gaping hole in the roof of your house. It’s a gateway for frigid air to enter and for heated air to escape in the winter.
What is the difference between a chimney flue and damper?
The flue is where the smoke escapes when the fire is going. Dampers are placed inside of the flue to help control ventilation. Your damper should have a chain or handle that you can access in order to open and close it.
How do you open a chimney damper?
You should turn the knob clockwise, as far as it can go, or push the rod all the way up to open the damper. If there is a metal chain in or besides your fireplace, it means that your chimney has a top-mounted damper. If the chain is tightly attached to a hook, the damper is closed.
When should I close the damper on my fireplace?
You should close the damper on your fireplace once the fire and embers have all burned out. This prevents warm air in your house from escaping out the chimney. You should open the damper before lighting a fire and close it once the fire is done burning.
Does a wood burning fireplace need a damper?
Newer models of wood stove don’t typically require a damper. A damper was traditionally used on older, less efficient, models of stove to help reduce the flow of air leaving the firebox. Certified modern stoves meet stringent regulations and typically won’t need a damper to perform well.
How much does it cost to open a fireplace damper?
The damper should be kept open until all embers are finished burning to prevent smoke from escaping into the home. When the fireplace is not in use, the damper should always be closed. An open damper is like an open window, allowing large amounts of heat from the home to escape.
Is it OK to leave the flue open overnight?
The smoke from burning wood contains carbon monoxide, so in order to prevent this toxic byproduct from entering your home, it is important to leave the flue open overnight. This enables a draft to carry the compound out into the atmosphere, instead of sinking down the chimney and saturating the room.
Should the damper be open all the way?
When should the damper be kept open or closed? The fireplace damper should always be in the open position whenever you have a fire in the fireplace. Close the damper when the fire is extinguished. This will prevent the heated air from escaping through the chimney and will keep water and other debris out of the flue.
Where is the fireplace damper located?
What is a fireplace damper? Think of a chimney damper like a lid for your fireplace. It is located in the flue, which is the air shaft through which smoke and air can travel in and out of your chimney, and is located above the firebox where the fire is made, and is in use both when fireplace is active and inactive.
How do I know if my chimney flue is open?
Conduct a visual check. Lean in under your chimney just outside of your wood burning stove. You should find a metal device just within the chimney or flue opening. The damper is open if you can see through the damper up to your chimney. If you only see a metal plate, the damper is in a closed position.
How do you fix a stuck chimney damper?
If the damper still refuses to budge, use a rust- and corrosion-cutting oil such as WD-40 to help dissolve the rust and corrosion at the damper’s hinges. When the damper is operational, work it back and forth while applying a high-temperature lubricant at all the joints and moving parts.
Can you go to bed with embers in the fireplace?
You should never leave a fireplace burning overnight, regardless of the source. Before you go to sleep, be sure to put out the fire and let the materials cool down. Unattended fire is a hazard, and even the slightest gust of wind can reignite it or blow embers to a nearby flammable material.
Do I close the glass doors on my fireplace?
The glass doors should be closed as the fire dies down to minimize the amount of room air going up the fireplace chimney. When burning gas logs in a wood-burning fireplace, the glass doors should always be fully open when the gas logs are burning.
Can you leave a fire in a fireplace?
A fireplace should never be left burning if it is going to be unattended in any capacity. This includes during the night while you sleep. You should always extinguish the fire using the previously mentioned method anytime that you are going to leave your home or plan to go to bed for the night.
Do all open fires have a damper?
Not all chimneys or flues have a damper. Open fireplaces can usually be found with damper located within the upper part of the firebox. It’s common to find a damper as part of an open fireplace, but in some cases there may be no damper at all.
Why does smoke billow out of fireplace?
A smoking fireplace is the result of chimney draft issues. The air inside your home pushes air up the chimney, like a vacuum. Good draft conditions allow vented smoke to travel up the chimney quickly, while poor draft conditions can cause smoke to billow back out into your home instead.