When summer weather finally arrives and you get the opportunity to enjoy your favorite outdoor activities like going for a hike at Shenandoah National Park, your chimney will likely be the furthest thing from your mind. However, proper chimney maintenance should be on your priority list all year long. 

A big part of a good fireplace maintenance plan is making sure your chimney is ready to go when the burning season comes back around. And during the downtime of summer – when you’re not using your chimney – is the best time to get it prepped to return to action when it’s most needed.

Even though it’s just arriving, summer will fly by before you know it. Don’t be caught off guard – schedule those summertime appointments to take care of all of your chimney-related needs now. You can reach out by phone at 434-481-3796 or book an appointment online

What Can I Do for My Chimney in the Summer?

When your chimney isn’t in use, you don’t have to worry about taking time to let it cool down after burning a fire. It’s the ideal period to have work down on your chimney.

Here are a few things you should try to get on your calendar over the summer:

original infographic stating tips for summertime maintenance
  • An annual chimney inspection. The best time to get a good, close-up look at your chimney is when it’s dormant. This is when we can use video equipment to get a clear view of all the nooks and crannies of your chimney system.
  • A yearly chimney sweeping. Your chimney probably gets a fair share of usage during the burning season…which means there’s been ample time for creosote and debris to build up. Schedule an annual chimney cleaning to clear our creosote and other dangerous fire hazards.
  • Any necessary repair work. If your annual chimney inspection reveals an issue that could compromise the functionality or structural integrity of your chimney, don’t delay repairs. For some jobs, warm weather can play a big role. For example, if you have a cracked liner and you choose HeatShield® to repair it, warmer temperatures will help it cure faster. 
  • Waterproofing your chimney. Water can be a chimney’s worst enemy. Over time, moisture can sneak into the bricks and mortar, causing them to crumble and crack. A waterproof sealant acts like a shield, repelling rain and humidity. You can get more information on our waterproofing services here.
  • Replace old or damaged parts. Crack crown? Warped flashing? After a long winter, your chimney may be worse for wear. While your chimney gets a break, schedule an appointment to have those battle-worn parts removed or upgraded.
  • Watch out for animal activity. Animals are prone to choosing chimneys to nest in and many species like to get a jump on winter by securing housing in the summer. Chimney swifts in particular are known to scout for new nesting locations between March and October. Once chimney swifts move in, it’s illegal to remove them. You’ll have to wait for them to leave on their own.
  • Get a fireplace installed. If you’re a Charlottesville homeowner interested in adding a fireplace to their home, there is no time like the present. Book a summer appointment to have an electric fireplace, wood stove, or wood insert installed. 

Is There Anything Else I Should Do?

There are some additional tasks you can do around the house that don’t involve your chimney directly, but taking these steps can help your system work more efficiently and safely:

  • Trim nearby trees. Tree branches hanging over your chimney can become dangerous projectiles in bad weather. Trimming back branches near your chimney will prevent damage from falling limbs. It also helps prevent leaves and debris from piling up and blocking your chimney flue.
  • Test smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. These small devices can be the difference between life and death. Take a few minutes to test that they are working correctly and change the batteries if needed. You can also update either device to a model with a 10-year battery.
  • Review your fire safety plan. No one wants to picture the worst-case scenario, but it’s always best to be prepared for any given situation. Design a plan for guidance in the event of a house fire. Mark exit points,  locations of fire extinguishers, and have phone numbers for emergency care easily accessible. 

Schedule Your Chimney Maintenance Now

Summer is for relaxation, but it’s never too soon to think about your chimney. Whether you need routine maintenance or you need a new chimney cap installed, The Chimney Guys is the right team for the job. Schedule an appointment with us by calling 434-481-3796 or requesting one online.