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Chimney Cleaning is Essential for the Life and Safety of your Chimney

Joseph Coupal - Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Cleaning and repairing your chimney means you have a safe chimney. There are a few important issues to keep in mind to ensure that your fireplace works properly and to avoid common chimney repair issues. A dirty chimney is dangerous, don’t let creosote build up. Creosote is an oil which results from burning wood or pellets and, overtime, as it builds up it can eventually catch fire. One way to attend to this issue is to purchase creosote cleaner which you spray into your fire to help keep the production of creosote down.

Blockages from falling debris or animals can hinder smoke and gases from escaping the chimney. Some of these gases are corrosive and over the years can damage your chimney flue. The flue should be inspected annually. Additionally, there can also be brickwork problems, both aesthetic and structural. Be sure to have your chimney inspected to avoid unnecessary repairs. And, having chimney repairs and inspections done regularly helps you find minor problems before they become large ones.

Summer is the perfect time for Chimney Cleanings and Inspections

Joseph Coupal - Friday, June 03, 2011

Summer is just around the corner and thank goodness we aren’t using our fireplaces for a while. This is the perfect time to schedule your chimney cleaning or inspection.

A clean chimney is a safe chimney. The type of wood you burn plays a large part in if you need to have your chimney cleaned. Burning green, wet wood makes your chimney need cleaning more often than dry, seasoned wood. However, chimney sweeping is an unregulated business. For this reason, people need to ask some questions, understand more, and be very vigilant when contracting someone to clean their chimney.

Your chimney should be cleaned and inspected every year to ensure that it is functioning properly, free of blockages, and safe for use. Additionally, if you are purchasing a new home, you are surely having a home inspection, consider a chimney inspection as well.

Even if you don't plan to use the fireplace, you should still have an expert inspect the chimney to make sure there aren't any leaks. If you are using central AC or heating, air could slowly escape through the chimney, leading to high utility bills. There are many potential dangers with chimneys, the most obvious problem in an older home being deterioration. The chimney itself or the flue liner could be slowly decaying. If you are planning on using the chimney, you want to fix a decaying chimney so gases cannot leak into your home and to keep flames and sparks contained within the fireplace and chimney.

At Fireplace Showcase our trained, knowledgeable, and licensed technicians have the knowledge and experience to handle any job, big or small.

Chimney Caps Protect Your Chimney from Nesting Birds

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, April 05, 2011

The warmer weather is on its way, and like many in Massachusetts, you love your hearths, but cannot wait to stop heating your home and open the windows. For many, the time to shut down and clean up the fireplace is just as fun as the first time we light it for the season.  It is time to clean out and clean up your fireplaces, stovesinserts and chimneys.
 
Chimney Caps are an integral part of the venting system for your fireplace and the venting system is an integral part of your overall fireplace system. The weather and the wildlife are the biggest enemies of your chimney. The birds are out and trying to find a great place to make their nests, what better place than your cozy, dark chimney. Birds and other animals contribute to your chimneys’ demise. All kinds of animals like to make their homes in chimneys especially if the fireplace has not been used for a couple of years.
 
When chimneys are not correctly sealed, moisture gets into the cracks and seams and can ruin the chimney. Brick chimneys are extremely susceptible. This is where chimney caps can provide extra protection. Chimney caps protect against all types of weather and wind, all of which can erode a chimney. Chimney caps can really prolong the structural integrity of a chimney.

If chimney caps are not in place this spring, the risk from weather and animals is dramatically increased. There are different kinds of chimney caps for masonry or stainless steel chimneys. And Fireplace Showplace can help you decide which style is best for your home.

Make Sure You Wood Stove Enthusiasts Follow Proper Safety Measures

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, January 11, 2011
Fireplaces and wood stoves are used  to help heat homes all across the country during the chilly months of the seasons. And if you have a wood stove then you know that wood heat is a renewable energy source that has many benefits. However, if not careful the use of wood heat can result in problems. So we want to provide some safety tips to remember during the winter time.

The first thing to do each and every year is to have a chimney sweep clean the flue. This will remove the creosote that had built up. Creosote is the black substance that condenses in the flue or stove pipe. Check the clearance of combustible materials from the fireplace or wood stove. The needed clearance will vary depending upon the model of the wood stove. Hearths should extend at least 18 inches on the floor in all directions and of course be non-combustible. The clearance from the wall depends upon use or not of a heat shield. A good rule of thumb is keeping combustibles 36 inches away.

Care should also be taken with the wood that is intended to be burned. Firewood should not be stored directly next to the house or inside. To do so risk bringing in wood destroying insects such as carpenter ants, termites and powder post beetles. It is better to bring in the wood as you need it. Always burn suspect wood immediately once brought inside to kill any bad bugs. Wood stoves are a great investment and if you’re like many Americans who love the feel and smell of a wood burning stove, then we have the perfect stoves for you. Contact us today to find out how you can get your very own wood stove, or even if you need any accessories for your fireplace needs. We have a wide selection of stoves, fireplaces, and accessories, so be sure to check them out!

Bring Back The Warmth And Coziness This Winter

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, December 28, 2010
If you have been thinking why all this hype about a vented gas fireplace, then it is time that you read the following. A Fireplace in general brings back memories of one's grandparents' hearth that radiated warmth, love and not to forget the never ending supply of warm cookies and milk! Well that is a thought that most people relate to when talking about a conventional fireplace. They also think about the times when their grandparents had to struggle on days when the fireplace's chimney was clogged and when it had to be cleaned.

Well, thanks to the advancement in technology, now you can actually have a vented gas fireplace in any room and not worry a bit about wood logs or cleaning out the chimney. All you would now have to do is turn it on, and play some good music while you enjoy the warmth of the fireplace with some nice cookies and warm milk.

Such fireplaces are also the best bet for people who are worried about the central heating system that runs on electricity. Conventional heating systems are popularly known to consume a lot of electricity and would end up heating rooms that are not even occupied. With a vented gas fireplace, you do not have to worry about your electricity bill, since they run on gas and you would not have to worry about the wrong rooms being heated unnecessarily, since each heater would heat only those rooms that you wish to have heated. So please feel free to contact us to find out more information on vented gas fireplaces or even any other fireplace questions you may have. We the experts at Fireplace Showcase would be happy to help.

Fireplace Showcase Presents: The One Match Fire Starter

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, November 30, 2010

It does not require the skill of an Eagle Scout to make a good fire in your fireplace. You just have to use a tried and trusted fire-starting method and what better way than to use an easy one step method using fatwood?

Before you start your fire crumble two or three sheets of paper such as yesterday’s newspaper. Avoid burning plastics or paper with color printing (such as the Sunday comics, magazines, or gift wrapping paper) as they give off toxic fumes. Put the crumbled paper on your fireplace grate. The grate elevates your fire, allowing it to pull in plenty of air to keep a good draft going up the chimney.

On top of the crumbled paper place a couple of sticks of fatwood, a natural fire starter. Fatwood comes from the stumps of pine trees, the section of the trees that naturally collects the highly combustible resinous sap or pitch. It is a sap soaked southern yellow pine natural fire starter. Purchased in easy-to-use sticks about 8 inches long, fatwood is known as nature's one-match fire starter.

When using fatwood as your fire starter, add 3 pieces of split, dried firewood on top of the fatwood. This will ensure that the fire will start and heat the right way, and will help to avoid any smoke coming into the room. As the fire burns, use the tongs from your fireplace tool set to add more split firewood as needed. Place a fireplace screen in front of the fire to protect your home and loved ones. Now, sit back and enjoy your fireplace fire! If you have any questions about fatwood or any fireplace needs feel free to contact us and we’ll be happy to help.

Cleaning Up Ash Is Easy With The Ash Vacuum

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Fireplaces are amazing to use during those chilly days by all, unfortunately no one enjoys cleaning them either. Ashes are such fine particles that they tend to go everywhere when trying to scoop them up into the garbage. The mess is only part of the problem as the coals can typically remain hot for many days adding to the difficulty of cleaning. Most household vacuums can't withstand the heat to vacuum the ashes and there aren't any commercial vacuums either. The Ash vacuum is designed to handle the heat from stoves and fireplaces while cleaning without any ashes flying around the room!

The Loveless Ash Vacuum is one of the safest ways of cleaning stoves and fireplaces. The entire vacuum is made of metal to withstand the highest of temperatures. The fire resistant filter is so fine that no ash will escape back into the room. Cleaning the filter is simple so as to allow the entire cleaning process to be completed without having to stop and clean the filter. The machine is designed to also hold up to 3 gallons of debris safely and securely. The vacuum is not designed to vacuum up wood or larger coal as they recommend leaving that to burn later. The unit operates very quietly and comes in several different styles that look appealing when left out. The device has many fire resistant plastic accessories to allow for easier cleaning based on the area size.

The Loveless units are the safest and easiest way for you to clean your ash contraptions in your home or office. This vacuum is designed with safety in mind and homeowners love it. No homeowner enjoys cleaning, though this vacuum series has definitely made it a much easier task. Contact us today to find out how you can get a ash vacuum or if you have any fireplace or chimney needs.

Fireplace Showcase Web Coupons Are About To Expire!

Joseph Coupal - Monday, October 18, 2010

As you all may be well aware of, we have been having a special on certain items this month and had coupons on our site that you could print out and bring to our store. Most of the coupons are money saving coupons that can help you all out for the month of October.

Our coupons include $100 off any regular price stove that is regularly priced over $1,000. We also have coupons for $10.00 off any Chimney, wood stove and wood insert cleaning. Our third coupon is $20.00 off pellet stoves and inserts. Then our final money saving coupon is 10% off custom glass enclosures, gas logs, mantels and marble or granite enclosures.

These coupons are only good for this month, and time is running out folks! The offers expire on October 31st. Make sure that you all print out these coupons and cut them out and bring them to our location to save you money on your next purchase. If you have any other questions or concerns give us a call or contact us via email and we’ll be glad to help.


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