Signs Your Chimney Needs to Be Cleaned
On colder winter nights, there’s nothing quite like a fire roaring the hearth. If you use your fireplace regularly, however, you need to perform the proper maintenance. When chimneys aren’t cleaned, buildups of soot and creosote develop, which can have dangerous consequences. Here are a few signs that your chimney needs to be cleaned.
Creosote is the main reason why chimney users need to perform regular maintenance on their chimneys. Most experts recommend that homeowners clean their chimneys at least once a year. These cleaning sessions are primarily to get rid of creosote buildup. Creosote is the result of incompletely burned wood; when you light a fire without sufficient oxygen, it results in unburned tar vapors, which collect over time. If the layers of creosote get too thick, it can cause chimney fires.
To avoid this fate, homeowners should know how to detect creosote buildup. First, they should check for downdrafts coming from the chimney. If the airflow is coming down the chimney, open windows and doors until the flow of air reverses. Once the air is moving in the right direction, put on a pair of goggles, grab a poker, and strike the creosote deposits above the smoke chamber. Ideally, the poker should leave a thin mark on the wall. If the scratch has the depth of a paper cut, your chimney doesn’t need to be cleaned. If the scratch has a measurable width, like 1/8-inches to 1/4-inches, your chimney needs to be cleaned before you use it again.
Other Signs That Your Chimney Needs to Be Cleaned
A visual inspection of creosote buildup isn’t the only sign of a chimney in need of a sweep. When using the fireplace, homeowners should be on the lookout for unusual activities, like slow-starting fires and smoke that fills the room or house. When the fire isn’t burning, homeowners may notice strange smells or gusts of cold air.
Don’t let your fireplace turn into a safety hazard. If your chimney needs professional assistance, look for expert chimney cleaning Washington DC.…
How to Maintain Your Air Conditioner
When you live in hotter climates, your air conditioner is one of the most important appliances in your home. It’s up to you to care for your AC system throughout the year. There are a few tips to help you with this process.
Adjust the Thermostat
You should always have your thermostat set for a realist temperature. If you’re not going to be home, there’s no reason for it to feel like an ice box. Particularly in the heart of summer, your AC will have to work on overtime in order to maintain the temperature. This will put a strain on your system and cost you more on your electric bill. If you don’t already have a digital thermostat, it might be a good idea to invest in one. It will allow you to set the thermostat so that it adjusts throughout different times of the day based on when you leave to go to work and when you go to sleep at night.
Change the Filters
The air filters on your air conditioner need to be changed regularly. The frequency will depend greatly on how many people live in your home and whether you own pets. If you live alone with no pets, it might be fine to change the filter once every six months. However, if you have a family of six with pets, the filters should be changed monthly. New filters ensure that the air is able to flow through so that the system runs efficiently. It also improves air quality.
Schedule Routine Maintenance
By scheduling an air conditioning service Fort Myers residents get a technician to check out the system. A technician can identify problems early on, clean vents, and adjust the thermostat for you. Identifying problems early can save you a significant amount of money and keep your system running at an optimum level.
There is a lot that you can do to protect your AC. By being a responsible homeowner, you can ensure that your system will run properly throughout the year.…