Chimneys and Liners
Preventive. Essential. Safe.
If you are considering installing a wood stove, it’s important that you realize the importance of chimneys and liners. The bottom line? A poor chimney system nullifies the effects of an efficient, high-quality product; an updated chimney system enhances them.
It’s pretty simple to say what is not an acceptable chimney—any system that is the wrong size, height, or material. But what is a proper chimney system? A chimney should consist of either a brick or block structure that has a properly sized flue liner fitting to the specific appliance. Factory built, insulated chimneys are also good. However, regardless of the type, the chimney should be installed two inches away from combustibles. Both the masonry and prefabricated chimney must also have enough mass or insulation to keep the interior of the pipe hot and the exterior cool. This helps to maintain draft, as well as prevent overheating and fires.
If your home already has a chimney system, it is extremely important to consider its current condition. For example, single brick chimneys often found in older houses are not suitable to operate an airtight wood stove. The thin, non-durable construction causes a buildup of creosote and improper transfer of heat, running a high risk of smoke leakage and house fire.
Fortunately, if such a system is still in decent condition, it can be made totally safe with the installation of a chimney liner. Consisting of a flexible or rigid liner system, lining keeps all the smoke, sparks, and heat inside the pipe—just like a new system would do. As a result, the exterior of the chimney stays cool, which greatly decreases the risk of a fire. Plus, these liner systems can even be installed in a chimney that has been damaged, whether from normal deterioration or fire. One of the best lining systems to install is a heavy gauge, stainless steel system. Virtually indestructible, this type of lining will keep your home safe even under the most severe chimney fire.
If you are installing a fireplace insert or hearth stove, you still need a proper chimney system. Because these products are also high efficiency EPA approved stoves, they, too, require the installation of a stainless steel liner from the top of the fireplace chimney to the flue collar of the stove. Plus, the typical fireplace chimney is often too large to properly draft an efficient appliance, causing the same creosote buildup and running the risk of a fire. A liner, however, keeps the chimney sealed, thereby prevents smoke spillage, rainwater leakage, and unnecessary heat transfer.
We hope you now understand the importance of a good chimney system. Your safety is the primary concern, and that’s why we strive to install only the best liners and chimneys possible. Have questions about your current or future chimney system? Please give us a call or come by the store today!