As the weather gets colder, many Minnesotans fire up fireplaces and stoves to stay warm in the Twin Cities during the long, bitterly cold, and snowy winters that often bring blizzard conditions. But did you know that your chimney needs to be inspected and cleaned regularly to prevent fires? A chimney inspection is the only way to ensure your chimney doesn't have blockages, creosote, or other damage that can cause a fire or health hazard. It’s also an excellent opportunity to identify any potential problems that may need fixing before they escalate into more extensive repairs.
When You Need a Chimney Inspection
The Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) recommends that Minnesotans with a fireplace, insert, stove, or other heating appliance have a yearly chimney inspection.
- If it has been more than 12 months since your last chimney inspection.
- You plan to purchase a home or sell your house.
- There is evidence of a chimney fire.
- Your chimney is leaning or may have structural issues.
- Your room fills with smoke when using the fireplace or stove.
- You hear animal sounds in the flue.
- Water is leaking into the fireplace.
- Snow and ice are accumulating on your roof.
- It is difficult to light a fire.
- The fire keeps going out.
Chimney Inspection Levels
At Twin City Fireplace, our chimney professionals follow the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Standards & Codes when performing all three chimney inspections. In addition, most states and municipalities, like Minnesota, have incorporated NFPA standards into their state and local building codes for residential and commercial buildings.
Level 1: When a chimney professional performs a basic level one inspection, they visually examine the interior/exterior surfaces of the entire chimney and venting system for signs of wear or damage.
Level 2: This is a more advanced inspection that uses a chimney camera to provide a more detailed assessment of the chimney's condition, which cannot be seen in a basic level 1 inspection. For this reason, we recommend all our clients have a level 2 inspection. Plus, the capability to find minor cracks and other damage before they grow into more dangerous problems more than pays for the service. It is also required before the transfer or sale of real estate.
Level 3: Your chimney technician will recommend a level three inspection when damage is suspected in an inaccessible area that requires removing or destroying a component or portions of the chimney to locate and repair any chimney damage.
Chimney Inspection for Real Estate
A chimney inspection for real estate, considered a level two inspection, differs from a standard home inspection. In Minnesota, a chimney professional performs a comprehensive examination before transferring real property, like single-family homes, condos, and townhomes. However, most home inspectors lack the professional training and expertise to adhere to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Standards and Codes, which is necessary to perform a level 2 real estate chimney inspection satisfactorily.
Chimney Camera Inspection
Chimney camera inspections are essential in ensuring that chimneys are safe and in good repair. It is typically performed during a level two inspection. But they are also used after a significant event like a heavy snowstorm, lightning strike, seismic shift, chimney fire, etc., to identify potential hazards that could pose a risk to the chimney, vents, attached heating appliances, and occupants. Our technician inserts a rod with a camera attached to the duct, avoiding any contact that could damage the chimney. The CCTV footage is reviewed in real-time on a monitor, allowing the technician and homeowner to assess the condition of the chimney immediately. Chimney camera inspections also give homeowners video documentation they may need when filing an insurance claim for a covered event.
Twin City Fireplace provides unparalleled chimney sweep services, including inspections, fireplace-wood stove cleaning, and creosote removal in Hennepin, Washington counties, and surrounding Greater Minneapolis-St. Paul communities.
Where to Get a Chimney Inspection
Twin City Fireplace is committed to providing unrivaled chimney inspection services, chimney camera inspections, and real estate chimney inspections in the Greater Minneapolis-Saint Paul area. We serve Minnesotans in Excelsior, MN; Golden Valley, MN; Maple Grove, MN; Hastings, MN, and communities throughout the Twin Cities area.
Call (952) 941-2685 Edina or (651) 204-0112 Woodbury to schedule an appointment today!