It’s getting chilly outside. You’re probably getting your firewood ready for burning to keep you warm on worst of nights. If you have a wood-burning fireplace, you’ll want to know how to maintain it throughout the winter season. Here are some tips for keeping your fireplace in the best condition.

Get your fireplace and chimney professional inspected. The professionals will be able to find any glaring or subtle issues that should be addressed before you start relying on the fireplace for heat.
Make sure your chimney cap is clean and there isn’t any significant build-up in the chimney. Dirt from outside and burning wood can get in the shoot and prevent smoke from escaping or create unpleasant odors from the debris that may be collecting. Creosote could also build up in the fireplace. This substance is flammable, so pay special attention to that.

Choose to burn hard woods over soft woods. Maple, oak, ash and birch may be more expensive than soft alternatives, but they will burn for longer period of time and hotter. They will also create less creosote and have less sap in them, making it easier to handle and maintain your fireplace.
Consider purchasing a stainless steel liner. This material stands up to the high temperatures your fireplace is likely to produce without deforming and keeping the embers from escaping.

Lastly, clean out your fireplace regularly. The best way to prevent build-up is to consistently remove the debris that causes it. Adjust your cleaning based on how often you use the fireplace and make sure you have the proper tools to clean. Wear protective gloves and a mask to cover your mouth and noise. Don’t breathe in any of the debris you are removing.

If you have any more questions, contact us for more advice on taking care of your fireplace.