Is The Poor Performance Of Your Fireplace Or Appliance Getting You Down?

Troubleshooting a malfunctioning or poorly performing fireplace or heating appliance starts with knowing how the system is supposed to work, inside and out, and what types of issues commonly hold it back from doing so. That’s why you need your troublesome system evaluated by an expert. American Chimney & Masonry’s technicians are extensively trained, and are certified by the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) and by the Oregon Chimney Sweep Association. Our team is expertly prepared to find and fix any problem that you may have with your heating appliance.

Performance issues can be tricky because a variety of different factors (both inside and outside of your appliance) can hinder proper function. But the techs at American Chimney & Masonry will thoroughly inspect your system to pinpoint what’s leading to performance issues. Here are a few performance subjects we commonly get calls about:

Draft Issues

Your chimney works using draft. Draft is created by the difference in pressure between the air inside and outside of your chimney, and pulls combustion gases and byproducts up and out of the home. A variety of problems can impede your draft, including issues with the appliance itself. We see draft issues caused by clogged flues that are overdue for a sweeping, damaged flue liners, and even chimney dampers that are stuck. We also see fireplaces that weren’t designed to encourage proper draft in the first place. Poorly-designed fireplaces can be replaced with a factory-built insert, or they can be “Rumford-ized,” or augmented with a centuries-old design that often drastically improves performance. For more information on draft issues and solutions, please click here.

Smoking Issues

A smoking chimney is unpleasant and unsafe. Draft issues and smoke issues often go hand in hand, and American Chimney & Masonry’s techs will be able to tell you if a draft problem is the cause of your smoke. But the reasons behind your smoky chimney can vary widely, from small and easily correctable errors to major repairs. Sometimes smoke is simply a result of user error — failing to open the damper completely after lighting a fire, or burning green, undried wood, for example. You might also have a badly clogged chimney cap. On the other end of the spectrum, your appliance could be connected to a flue that isn’t sized correctly, which makes relining a necessity. If there’s smoke in your home, give us a call — we can figure out what’s wrong, and correct it.

Insufficient Heating

Some homeowners rely on their fireplace mostly for mood and ambience. But if what you really want out of your heating appliance is heat, insufficient performance can be really frustrating. Certain types of appliances — older traditional masonry fireplaces, for instance — just aren’t great zone heaters, since a lot of their heat is lost up the chimney. But, many inserts and stoves manufactured and sold today are designed to reflect much more heat into a space with very little wasted energy. We regularly install stoves that can thoroughly heat anything from a small den to an entire floor of a home. If you’re wishing for a lot more heat from your appliance, we can help.

If your fireplace or appliance isn’t performing correctly or as well as you need it to, call American Chimney & Masonry at 503-644-0393 or click here to schedule online. Our CSIA-certified technicians can help!

We can figure out what’s wrong with your smoking chimney and help you get it fixed right the first time around.

American Chimney Cleaning and Masonry


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