The inspector was using his flashlight to peer inside the 35 year old fireplace flue in Walnut Creek, and to his amazement light was reflecting back and glistening.
From the top of the roof, he saw that the spark arrestor and raincap assembly was loose at the chimney flue and was heavily encrusted in a black shiny material – a sign of creosote buildup.
Creosote is a sticky, corrosive and extremely combustible substance that originates from the smokiest fires and the coolest chimneys, which produce the greatest amount of creosote build-up. In time, creosote buildup hardens in a chimney. What’s the danger in this?
If you decide to have a rip-roaring fire in the fireplace… it’s possible for creosote to catch on fire. With a heavy build up in your chimney, a small fire can turn into a very large one in moments… and the roar is deafening.
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