Its purpose is to control the amount of smoke and air ventilation that drafts upward through the flue system. How to Close a Chimney Flue. Shut Off the Pilot. Even with the fireplace damper closed, there are air leaks around the edges of the damper. … Cut out the pattern and put it in place to see if it fits. It’s designed to seal your fireplace closed when you’re not using it. You must open the damper every time you start a fire. If you run into problems with your damper, call Fluesbrothers Chimney Service to help! Contact. The only way to know if a damper is open or closed is to view it from inside the fireplace firebox. If you suspect a jam, it’s best to let a chimney sweep clear it. However, most throat dampers allow some heat to go up the chimney. How to Open Your Chimney Damper. How to Close Fireplace Damper – Stovax Vogue Small Wood Burning Stove with Cast Iron top. Every minute that the damper is open, when the fireplace is not being used, up to 600 feet of heated air can escape. Look for evidence that the damper is jammed by debris, nests, or dead animals that have fallen into the chimney. The damper is designed to be shut when the fireplace is not in use and can be easily opened when it is. Every minute that the damper is open, when the fireplace is not being used, up to 600 feet of heated air can escape. The damper itself will now be able to be twisted off. Keep the damper closed when the fireplace is not in use. Simply close the damper (or door) tight, and the heat is contained in the house. The damper should be kept open until all embers are finished burning to prevent smoke from escaping into the home. The damper should always be fully open before lighting a fire and when the fireplace is in use. Measure each side of the opening just below the damper seal and transfer the measurements to a pattern drawn on cardboard. Typically, you will release the chain or cable, which should result in the damper springing up to an open position. Damper operation depends on the type of damper you have. It’s normal for dampers to warp or rust out and lose their metal-to-metal seal. While the idea of a fireplace is romantic, it might be a nuisance in practice. In fact, it’s estimated that top-sealing dampers can reduce heat loss by 90 percent! The gap between the round plate and the flue pipe is small, so there is less air lost to the chimney than a masonry throat damper. How to Block Off a Fireplace. The damper is the small metal flap you can open and close when looking up inside your fireplace and into the chimney flue system. Its job is to seal off the firebox from the rest of the chimney, and can be opened or close with a lever. In generally, you want to have your damper closed as often as possible when your fireplace isn’t in use, to keep warm air from rising up and out of your chimney and to keep cold bursts of air from blowing down the chimney and into your home. Most masonry fireplaces are equipped with a standard throat damper just above the firepit, which is the opening into the chimney flue. The top of the damper stays horizontal the entire time, so in the “open” position, the damper also serves as a chimney cap. The primary purpose of a damper is to seal off the firebox from the chimney. It can be opened or closed through several mechanisms, including a latch, a handle, or a pull chain. You can follow these easy steps to block off your fireplace or even to close it up completely. Adjusting a top-sealing fireplace damper requires getting up on the roof, a job best left to a chimney professional. Put on goggles and a dust mask. How to Install a Fireplace Damper Step 1 - Open the Fireplace Doors. This will allow the heat to be pushed more into the home and heat the house without concern over fire hazards. This is done to prevent warm, interior room air from being pulled into the firebox and up the chimney. You may want to use an ash shovel to move around the ashes at the bottom of the fireplace floor to be sure they aren’t still smoking or smoldering before closing the damper. Close the damper when the fire is extinguished. Doing so allows the chimney to exhaust all the smoke that is created by the fire, without losing all the heat. Throat dampers sit lower in the flue, just above the firebox. These dampers are open by lifting the handle up, pushing the damper upwards, and pinning the damper in the upward position by setting one of the notches on the handle onto the mounted ratchet on the frame of the fireplace. The damper in a gas fireplace should remain open all the time. Step 5 - Install New Damper. Dampers are, after all, a crucial part of fireplace safety. A chimney cap damper costs around $200 to $300, not including the screened chimney cap, which runs between $90 and $120. Do You Need a New Chimney? Typically, to open the damper, push up or lift the rod all the way. The wire expands to open the damper and compresses to close it. As you push or pull the handle, the counter-weight moves, helping to open or close the damper. How to Close Fireplace Damper – Pleasant Hearth 46 In Natural Gas Full Size Cherry Vent Free Fireplace System 32 000 Btu. by Jeremy Biswell | Oct 12, 2018 | Fireplace Maintenance. Can I partially close the damper on my wood-burning fireplace so less air goes up the chimney? When properly installed, dampers should create an airtight seal that prevents airflow between the chimney and the rest of the house. Fireplaces are constructed fairly simply. With an unsealed chimney, utility costs will typically spike because air warmed by central heating in winter will go up the chimney instead of staying inside the home. When the fireplace is not in use, the damper … The glass between the firebox and your home prevents cold or heat from coming down the chimney and by leaving the damper open at all times, you eliminate the risk of having gas build up or backdraft into your home. Although top-sealing fireplace dampers tend to be relatively trouble-free, sometimes the cables need to be replaced or adjusted, or debris interferes with the moving parts. With the damper left open and no fire in the fireplace, cold air can quickly spill down the chimney and into the room. When the embers are cold to the touch, pull the cord or lever to close the damper. Whether your fireplace is gas or wood-burning, if it was built with a pre-fabricated insert, then it almost certainly has a damper. You should be able to open and close it with a knob (this is usually located on the front face of the fireplace) or rod (located in the fireplace, above the firebox). Closing the damper too soon can allow smoke to come back into your home or allow carbon monoxide from your fire to build up within your home. A fireplace is a huge source of drafts from the cold outdoors. Functionally, this is what that means: Start your fire before you “need” it. This will allow the heat to be pushed more into the home and heat the house without concern over fire hazards. Your damper may have a ratcheting lift or push rod that you push up or pull down. If you have a new fireplace, you might be wondering how — and when — to open and close your fireplace damper. Keep the damper open until all open flames are gone. If you are interested in adding a new solid-fuel heating appliance to your home, visit our showroom. When the damper fails to close all the way, air from the outside seeps into your home. When there are coals and embers still in the fireplace, close the damper to stop heat from escaping through the chimney. Pulling the handle towards you will close the damper. Another type of damper is a screw-type or rotary control damper. When to Close Fireplace Damper. Step 3 - Remove the Existing Damper. When we get calls about dampers at Magic Mountain Chimney Sweeps, we are always happy to provide answers. When you aren’t using your fireplace, it should be closed to prevent heated and cooled air in your home from escaping. Simple rotate the key to the left or right to fully open or fully close the damper. This means in the winter, cold air increases your heating bill and, in the summer, the hot air makes cooling more difficult. Doing so will keep some of the warm air from your heating system from escaping up the chimney. To start a fire, you must have the damper in the full-open position. It is important that a damper is in good operating condition so that air cannot freely pass through the damper doors when they are closed. Doing so allows the chimney to exhaust all the smoke that is created by the fire, without losing all the heat. The most common damper style for prefabricated fireplaces is a factory-installed pivot damper. There will be a “key” style device in your fireplace wall. The real danger is if there are gas logs in the fireplace. Here’s what you need to know. Why is this so important? If your damper is located at the top of your fireplace, you have a traditional throat damper. Close it when it's not it use. A fireplace flue is designed to lead smoke outdoors when your fireplace is being used. After the fire has started, close the damper as far as possible without causing smoke to back up into the room. If you can find the controls to your damper, you can check to see whether it’s open or closed. You may, on the other hand, have a top-mount damper, which is located at the very top of the chimney flue. You will need to wait several hours after the fire has extinguished to close the damper. The plate pivots open and closed and is operated by a handle. There will be a “key” style device in your fireplace wall. Read on to learn details about the important functions of dampers: There are two types or locations of dampers. Other fireplaces use levers to operate the throat dampers by switching it to the right or left. 1) Visual Inspection. A fireplace damper is a set of flaps in your fireplace that helps to prevent heat from escaping. With a top-sealing damper in place, air can’t easily escape through your chimney flue when your fireplace isn’t in use. Use the directions below to help with opening your damper, depending on the one that matches … Learn all about fireplace damper basics below. 5. It should not accidentally close. This is not only a fire hazard, it can also cause deadly carbon monoxide poisoning. Although top-sealing fireplace dampers tend to be relatively trouble-free, sometimes the cables need to be replaced or adjusted, or debris interferes with the moving parts. Open the doors completely to your fireplace. After years of constant exposure to heat, ashes and moisture, many fireplace dampers will become stuck, warped or inefficient. Locate the damper and remove it from the chimney. You need to open the damper when you start a fire to allow for proper airflow and let the smoke out. Another study estimated that the effective leakage area of closed dampers averaged about 30 square inches—equivalent to a square opening 5.5" x 5.5" in size allow continual flow of heated air to the outside. The damper is a crucial piece of hardware for any fireplace. When there are coals and embers still in the fireplace, close the damper to stop heat from escaping through the chimney. There will be a rod that is fixed inside the chimney by nuts. Location. Fireplace dampers are metal “doors” inside chimney flues, and they help to control ventilation. The damper should be kept open until all embers are finished burning to prevent smoke from escaping into the home. The damper is a door of sorts, that when closed, separates the firebox from the chimney. Place a dollar bill between the two doors of the damper as it closes. • Pivot damper. You can clean a dirty or rusty damper with a wire brush along with lots of elbow grease. For top-quality chimney maintenance services, including damper repair and replacement, contact Magic Mountain Chimney Sweeps. The frame is mortared in place just below the smoke shelf. Pull the lever to open and close the damper. To open the damper, turn the knob clockwise as far as it can go, which pushes the rod upward. | Web Marketing by Brandtastic! Over time, the extreme heat and rapid change in temperature. How to Close Fireplace Damper – Wood Fireplace Flue Fireplace Flue Pipe . You’ll be able to enjoy the warmth and wake up to a warmer house in the morning because the coals will last well into the night. If you want an easy way to temporarily block and unused fireplace flue to stop a draft, you should consider installing a top sealing damper. This way you (or the next owner) have the option to have it open or closed at will. A flue directs smoke outside of a home when a fireplace is in use. From here the process is actually quite simple. Fireplace dampers sit almost directly above the heat of the fire. Never close the damper or leave the fireplace unattended while there is a fire in the fireplace. This is not only a fire hazard, it can also cause deadly carbon monoxide poisoning. Some models feature a stainless steel cap atop a diagonal spring wire. The damper is a vent that controls airflow in and out of the chimney. When to close a fireplace damper is simple – when the fireplace isn’t in use. We have a nice selection of top-quality hearth appliance brands, and there are styles to match every type of décor. The damper is a rotating metal trapdoor that when closed, can keep heat inside your room, while keeping cold air out. The damper should always be fully open before lighting a fire and when the fireplace is in use. Is My Chimney Damper Open or Closed? That is where your damper seal will be installed. You lift the handle, push open the damper, and prop … If your damper is located at the top of your chimney, you have a top-mount damper. Close the throat damper after the fire has cooled completely. Step 6 - Open Damper. This type of damper is spring-loaded and has a default position of open. Separate remaining bits of firewood on the grate. When it comes to closing the damper, however, it takes a little more care. Stir embers on the fireplace floor. As the name implies, rotary damper work on a rotating system, with long, screw-like rods that move the damper. When a fireplace is not in use, the damper should be closed to operate as a “seal.” Otherwise, cold air will enter the home. Look up inside the fireplace with a flashlight. Pull it down to close the damper. Use a wrench to loosen the nuts and remove the metal rod. Fireplace dampers are made from metal or ceramic to withstand the intense heat of the fireplace. A throat damper, which is the most common, is located just above the firebox inside of the chimney flue. Position yourself just outside of your fireplace and lean in under your chimney. Other models feature a low-profile frame that fits the very top of the damper. Make sure to close the damper whenever your fireplace is not in use! Some of the most common types of dampers include: • Poker dampers. A chimney can act as a wind tunnel even when the damper is closed, sucking cold air down into your home through the fireplace opening.. A fireplace draft stopper is an efficient way to prevent this from happening. They usually feature mesh guards to keep critters out of your flue and a leak-proof gasket to keep moisture at bay. Stop by our Main Showroom at 210 Pennsylvania Ave., Westminster, Maryland 21157; or give us a call at 301-695-6991 to schedule chimney services. If it’s a fireplace the only problem I can imagine is if somebody builds a fire without verifying that the flue is open. That means your furnace will be working overtime to replace the air running up your chimney. It’s a simple technology, but it does take some know how to properly utilize your damper, and there are various types of dampers with different types of operation. Although heat rises, cold air sinks in the direction of the gravity pull. If you only need to replace the damper plate, these cost around $50. If you have gas logs in your fireplace, let the smoke and fumes dissipate for a few moments before closing the damper. The operation of your damper will depend on the type of damper you have. The opening in the frame is typically 3" to 8" wide and 24" to 36" long. A chimney damper prevents conditioned (warmed or cooled) house air from escaping through the flue when you’re not using the fireplace. If you have a wood-burning fireplace, you have to be sure that all of the embers have burned out before you close the damper; smoldering embers can put off dangerous carbon monoxide. A fireplace damper is a device commonly found in a wood-burning gas fireplace. A spring pulls open the hinged damper top. If you start a fire when the damper is closed, you’ll realize the mistake quickly when the room fills up with smoke. Take your old damper with you to a chimney supply store. If the damper cracks while being rapidly heating and cooling, it will no longer work properly. A cast-iron damper with opening mechanism costs an average of $150 to $250, depending on the size. Chimney top dampers sit at the top of the chimney with a chain and lever to open and close it. Vent-free Gas Fireplaces The exception to the open damper rule is in a vent-free gas insert. That isn’t dangerous, just inconvenient as the house will fill up with smoke. Unless you have a vent-free fireplace, the first step you should take before lighting a fire in a wood-burning fireplace or gas fireplace is to open the damper. If you have a throat damper, you'll likely have either a lever or a knob. Its job is to seal off the firebox from the rest of the chimney, and can be opened or close with a lever. The damper frame is fabricated from heavy cast iron or steel and has an opening that allows the smoke to travel up through the chimney. A stainless steel cable runs down the chimney into the opening of the fireplace allowing you to pull on the cable which opens or closes the damper. If you hear the wind howl through the chimney, or get annoyed by the sound of rain beating against the metal, a fireplace might not be for you. If this is the case, most dampers can be cleaned with minimal effort. After the fire has started, close the damper as far as possible without causing smoke to back up into the room. Therefore, you have to pull a chain or cable to close it during the summer when you won’t use the fireplace. Top-sealing dampers come in two basic forms. But, what do I do with my older home’s fireplace that has a missing or badly damaged damper? A chain or cable is used for top-mount chimney dampers. • Rotary dampers. Gas-log fireplaces are equipped with either a standing pilot light (one that is lit all the time) or with electronic ignition. Close it when it's not it use. A pivot damper operates on a long, jointed handle. This way if you forget to open the damper; the handle and the plate will be very hot. A groove or rust out and lose their metal-to-metal seal you push or down. Will allow the heat a vent that controls airflow in and out of chimney... 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Mechanism costs an average of $ 150 to $ 250, depending on the size you push or to! Over time, the damper is simple – when the embers are finished to... The base of the firebox and up the chimney be wondering how — and when fireplace. | all Rights Reserved | Web Marketing by Brandtastic fire before you “ need ” it smoke that is your... Wood-Burning fireplaces usually have a ratcheting push or lift rod, or a pull,.

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