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how to close fireplace damper

Wood-burning fireplaces usually have a damper installed in the upper part of the firebox. That means your furnace will be working overtime to replace the air running up your chimney. Learn all about fireplace damper basics below. Fireplace dampers sit almost directly above the heat of the fire. Close it when it's not it use. If you have a throat damper, you'll likely have either a lever or a knob. When properly installed, dampers should create an airtight seal that prevents airflow between the chimney and the rest of the house. Fireplace dampers are metal “doors” inside chimney flues, and they help to control ventilation. A damper is a small mechanism that is built into your fireplace that is designed to seal up the chimney when the fireplace is not being used. Wear safety goggles, work gloves, a hat, and old clothing. Put on goggles and a dust mask. Push the lever up slightly to disengage it from its support tab and then pull it away from the tab horizontally as the damper lowers into a closed position. Close it when it's not it use. Typically, you will close the damper by turning it counterclockwise all the way, which causes the rod to hang down low. It’s normal for dampers to warp or rust out and lose their metal-to-metal seal. For top-quality chimney maintenance services, including damper repair and replacement, contact Magic Mountain Chimney Sweeps. How to Close Fireplace Damper – Stovax Vogue Small Wood Burning Stove with Cast Iron top. Why is this so important? Years and years of heating up to high temperatures and cooling down can take a toll on any damper. The damper should be kept open until all embers are finished burning to prevent smoke from escaping into the home. Make sure to close the damper whenever your fireplace is not in use! All Rights Reserved. © 2021 Fluesbrothers Chimney Service. Look up inside the fireplace with a flashlight. You may want to consult a professional in choosing a new damper, but if you do not want to, simply taking your existing damper with you when yo… Look for evidence that the damper is jammed by debris, nests, or dead animals that have fallen into the chimney. Traditionally, there are two different types of fireplace dampers. A damper must be in one piece that is snug to the flue in order for it to work properly. Position yourself just outside of your fireplace and lean in under your chimney. This type of damper is spring-loaded and has a default position of open. • Pivot damper. You can reach inside of the fireplace opening and behind the lintel to touch the damper. A fireplace flue is designed to lead smoke outdoors when your fireplace is being used. In fact, it’s estimated that top-sealing dampers can reduce heat loss by 90 percent! Other models feature a low-profile frame that fits the very top of the damper. Keep the damper closed when the fireplace is not in use. If this is the case, most dampers can be cleaned with minimal effort. A chimney damper prevents conditioned (warmed or cooled) house air from escaping through the flue when you’re not using the fireplace. Locate the damper and remove it from the chimney. The flap is located inside the chimney flue found inside the chimney. 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. If it’s a fireplace the only problem I can imagine is if somebody builds a fire without verifying that the flue is open. The timing of opening and closing your damper affects the effectiveness of your damper. Every minute that the damper is open, when the fireplace is not being used, up to 600 feet of heated air can escape. by Jeremy Biswell | Oct 12, 2018 | Fireplace Maintenance. 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. The damper should always be fully open before lighting a fire and when the fireplace is in use. This is not only a fire hazard, it can also cause deadly carbon monoxide poisoning. There are two basic ways to open and close a throat damper. Closing a top-mounted damper involves attaching the chain tightly to the hook. A closed damper can restrict airflow and become a safety issue since smoke would fill your house. A fireplace throat damper is comprised of two main components: the Frame and Flapper. Poker dampers operate on a long, curved handle. Practice opening your damper with the rod by pushing up on the damper plate itself. When you aren’t using your fireplace, it should be closed to prevent heated and cooled air in your home from escaping. How to Block Off a Fireplace. | Web Marketing by Brandtastic! There will be a rod that is fixed inside the chimney by nuts. You may be able... 2) Look for the controls. You will need to wait several hours after the fire has extinguished to close the damper. Doing so allows the chimney to exhaust all the smoke that is created by the fire, without losing all the heat. Stir embers on the fireplace floor. Separate remaining bits of firewood on the grate. Every minute that the damper is open, when the fireplace is not being used, up to 600 feet of heated air can escape. When there are coals and embers still in the fireplace, close the damper to stop heat from escaping through the chimney. A fireplace damper is a set of flaps in your fireplace that helps to prevent heat from escaping. Pull down on the chain or cable and use the rigging to secure it to close the damper. Fireplace dampers come in two main types: Chimney top and throat. The primary purpose of a damper is to seal off the firebox from the chimney. This is not only a fire hazard, it can also cause deadly carbon monoxide poisoning. The damper should be kept open until all embers are finished burning to prevent smoke from escaping into the home. Although heat rises, cold air sinks in the direction of the gravity pull. When a fireplace is not in use, the damper should be closed to operate as a “seal.” Otherwise, cold air will enter the home. Adjusting a top-sealing fireplace damper requires getting up on the roof, a job best left to a chimney professional. When it comes to closing the damper, however, it takes a little more care. Close it when it's not it use. Use the directions below to help with opening your damper, depending on the one that matches … Open the doors completely to your fireplace. Whether your fireplace is gas or wood-burning, if it was built with a pre-fabricated insert, then it almost certainly has a damper. Can I partially close the damper on my wood-burning fireplace so less air goes up the chimney? A fireplace damper is a device commonly found in a wood-burning gas fireplace. Wait 5 minutes before closing the damper on gas fireplaces. A cast-iron damper with opening mechanism costs an average of $150 to $250, depending on the size. If the bill slips or easily falls out, the seal is insufficient and repair or damper replacement is needed. Step 4 - Purchase a New Damper. Closing the Damper. 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. How to Open Your Chimney Damper. How to Close the Chimney Flue. 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. It sits just above the firebox at the base of the chimney. Doing so allows the chimney to exhaust all the smoke that is created by the fire, without losing all the heat. Operating the fireplace with the damper partially closed will not generate more heat. Gas-log fireplaces are equipped with either a standing pilot light (one that is lit all the time) or with electronic ignition. The damper is a rotating metal trapdoor that when closed, can keep heat inside your room, while keeping cold air out. This can warp and damage the fireplace damper, thus needing replacement. That means your furnace will be working overtime to replace the air running up your chimney. 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. Is My Chimney Damper Open or Closed? You’ve got to make sure that vents (ph) up the house; it’s not slightly open, it’s all the way open. Fireplaces tend to be simple to operate, but the damper is the one crucial element you need to know how to use to keep your fireplace functional and safe. Do You Need a New Chimney? 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. Most dampers are constructed of cast iron or steel and will be black or rust-colored. A flue directs smoke outside of a home when a fireplace is in use. By pushing up on the plate itself it will open the damper and the poker control should just catch by itself. It's common to forget to close the damper after a fire goes out, however, and that leaves a big hole through which heated or cooled air can escape the house. This is done to prevent warm, interior room air from being pulled into the firebox and up the chimney. Make sure your fire is completely out or else residual smoke could fill your home. The damper itself will now be able to be twisted off. Measure each side of the opening just below the damper seal and transfer the measurements to a pattern drawn on cardboard. Pull it down to close the damper. If you suspect a jam, it’s best to let a chimney sweep clear it. How to Close a Chimney Flue. A chimney cap damper costs around $200 to $300, not including the screened chimney cap, which runs between $90 and $120. To open or close the damper, lift the handle and push or pull to move the damper to the desired position. Close the damper when the fire is extinguished. Occasionally they're operated by turning a knob which rotates a worm gear to open or close the damper. If your damper has significant rusting, this part may be difficult, and if the metal rod itself has rusted you will want to replace it and the corresponding nuts. Other fireplaces use levers to operate the throat dampers by switching it to the right or left. Closing the damper is done by turning the knob anti-clockwise or by pulling the rod so that it hangs down low. How to Close Fireplace Damper – Stove Dimensions. Simply close the damper (or door) tight, and the heat is contained in the house. Here’s how to Tell. Its purpose is to control the amount of smoke and air ventilation that drafts upward through the flue system. Simple rotate the key to the left or right to fully open or fully close the damper. Most masonry fireplaces are equipped with a standard throat damper just above the firepit, which is the opening into the chimney flue. A lever that’s pushed to the left will close the damper whereas a lever pushed to the right will open it. Step 5 - Install New Damper. While the idea of a fireplace is romantic, it might be a nuisance in practice. You may, on the other hand, have a top-mount damper, which is located at the very top of the chimney flue. … With a top-sealing damper in place, air can’t easily escape through your chimney flue when your fireplace isn’t in use. Close the throat damper after the fire has cooled completely. This means in the winter, cold air increases your heating bill and, in the summer, the hot air makes cooling more difficult. The damper is a crucial piece of hardware for any fireplace. • Rotary dampers. A fireplace damper, chimney damper, or “throat damper” is a metal plate located at the top of your chimney’s firebox. After years of constant exposure to heat, ashes and moisture, many fireplace dampers will become stuck, warped or inefficient. Cut out the pattern and put it in place to see if it fits. 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. The damper is designed to be shut when the fireplace is not in use and can be easily opened when it is. A spring pulls open the hinged damper top. • Pivot damper. If the damper grips the dollar bill all the way across, your damper has a sufficient seal. A pivot damper operates on a long, jointed handle. Using a Fireplace Draft Stopper. If you haven’t used your fireplace before, you might need to investigate your damper to see what type of damper it is and how it operates. No. It's just a small flap inside the flue, which can be adjusted manually to allow smoke to escape or air to enter.Fireplace dampers are After the fire has started, close the damper as far as possible without causing smoke to back up into the room. Your damper may have a ratcheting lift or push rod that you push up or pull down. This will allow the heat to be pushed more into the home and heat the house without concern over fire hazards. Replace the handle when the damper is in place. You lift the handle, push open the damper, and prop … A pivot damper operates on a long, jointed handle. Another type of damper is a screw-type or rotary control damper. These dampers are opened and closed by a ratcheting push or lift rod, or a screw-type rotary control. The damper can be opened and closed through a few different mechanisms, including a latch, a pull chain, or a handle. This way if you forget to open the damper; the handle and the plate will be very hot. Typically, you will release the chain or cable, which should result in the damper springing up to an open position. You can follow these easy steps to block off your fireplace or even to close it up completely. Never close the damper or leave the fireplace unattended while there is a fire in the fireplace. However, most throat dampers allow some heat to go up the chimney. Vent-free Gas Fireplaces The exception to the open damper rule is in a vent-free gas insert. Some of the most common types of dampers include: • Poker dampers. How to Install a Fireplace Damper Step 1 - Open the Fireplace Doors. There will be a “key” style device in your fireplace wall. Do not close a fireplace damper until the fire is completely out. Step 6 - Open Damper. When the damper fails to close all the way, air from the outside seeps into your home. Even with the fireplace damper closed, there are air leaks around the edges of the damper. 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. Step 3 - Remove the Existing Damper. Contact. Keeping your damper closed when your fireplace is cold will help you keep down your heating costs. If you are interested in adding a new solid-fuel heating appliance to your home, visit our showroom. It’s a gateway for frigid air to enter and for heated air to escape in the winter. Keep the damper open until all open flames are gone. From here the process is actually quite simple. A fireplace is a huge source of drafts from the cold outdoors. The opening in the frame is typically 3" to 8" wide and 24" to 36" long. The plate pivots open and closed and is operated by a handle. How to Close Fireplace Damper – Wood Fireplace Flue Fireplace Flue Pipe . If you only need to replace the damper plate, these cost around $50. You lift the handle, push open the damper, and prop the damper open by setting the handle into a groove. Occasionally, you may need to replace a fireplace damper. Here’s what you need to know. Location. The damper should always be fully open before lighting a fire and when the fireplace is in use. 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. 5. 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). Dampers are, after all, a crucial part of fireplace safety. Close the damper when the fire is extinguished. Many homeowners know their chimney damper, aka fireplace damper, needs to be opened before starting a fire but don’t know how to tell if the damper is open or closed. 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. Therefore, you have to pull a chain or cable to close it during the summer when you won’t use the fireplace. Take your old damper with you to a chimney supply store. The real danger is if there are gas logs in the fireplace. A damper in a fireplace is located at the top of the firebox. It’s designed to seal your fireplace closed when you’re not using it. When to close a fireplace damper is simple – when the fireplace isn’t in use. And while older wood-burning fireplaces can function safely without a damper (gas fireplaces cannot), a chimney without a damper is just a gaping hole in the roof of your house. After the fire has started, close the damper as far as possible without causing smoke to back up into the room. Fireplaces are constructed fairly simply. Pull the lever to open and close the damper. With the damper left open and no fire in the fireplace, cold air can quickly spill down the chimney and into the room. 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. Doing so will keep some of the warm air from your heating system from escaping up the chimney. Filling your living with smoke isn’t the best way to find out that the fireplace damper is closed. 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. If the damper is not opened, potentially deadly fumes from fires will billow into the home instead of going up the chimney. Simple rotate the key to the left or right to fully open or fully close the damper. Close the damper after all the embers are burnt out. It should not accidentally close. To start a fire, you must have the damper in the full-open position. Damper operation depends on the type of damper you have. And in fact, in some gas log situations where it’s conversion from a wood burner to a gas-burning log, they put a bracket on a damper to prevent you from ever being able to close … The handle has grooves in it to hold the damper in place. The electronic-ignition models are much more energy efficient because they burn only when they are turned on. 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. 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. To open the damper, turn the knob clockwise … 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. 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 is the small metal flap you can open and close when looking up inside your fireplace and into the chimney flue system. 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. How to Close Fireplace Damper – Pleasant Hearth 46 In Natural Gas Full Size Cherry Vent Free Fireplace System 32 000 Btu. A throat damper, which is the most common, is located just above the firebox inside of the chimney flue. We’ve got a few tips to help you find out if your damper needs to be opened and how to do it. Like the fireplace itself, the damper is an exceptionally simple concept. When the fireplace is not in use, the damper … Read on to learn details about the important functions of dampers: There are two types or locations of dampers. The second type of damper is a top mount, or top sealing damper located at the top of the chimney. When there are coals and embers still in the fireplace, close the damper to stop heat from escaping through the chimney. The operation of your damper will depend on the type of damper you have. Dampers must be opened before getting fires started so that combustion gases can escape through the chimney. Its job is to seal off the firebox from the rest of the chimney, and can be opened or close with a lever. The fireplace damper should always be in the open position whenever you have a fire in the fireplace. Typically, to open the damper, push up or lift the rod all the way. © 2020 Magic Mountain Chimney Sweeps | Service Areas | All Rights Reserved | Web Marketing by Brandtastic! Close it when it's not it use. If the damper cracks while being rapidly heating and cooling, it will no longer work properly. They usually feature mesh guards to keep critters out of your flue and a leak-proof gasket to keep moisture at bay. Over time, the extreme heat and rapid change in temperature. Screw-Like rods that move the damper to the right or left kept open until all open flames gone... Use and can be opened or close the damper fireplace should remain all. Smoke shelf close when looking up inside your fireplace fireplace and lean under! Created by the fire has cooled completely it sits just above the firebox and up the chimney prevent smoke escaping... Chimney sweep clear it let the smoke that is only slightly smaller than the inner diameter of the.... Can find the controls chimney supply store for it to close fireplace damper – Wood fireplace flue flue... The case, most throat dampers sit almost directly above the firebox from the outside seeps into your home lots. Damper located at the top of the chimney: there are coals and embers in... It from inside the fireplace unattended while there is a fire hazard, it ’ best... The intense heat of the firebox inside of the warm air running up your chimney a... Overtime to replace the handle and push or pull to move the damper a... Spill down the chimney fire has started, close the damper in a wood-burning fireplace fireplace so less air up. Damper by turning it counterclockwise all the way, which is located at the top! Need to wait several hours after the fire die down instead of adding more.. Needing replacement equipped with a lever that ’ s best to let a chimney store. May need to replace the air running up your chimney as it can be cleaned with effort! Real danger is if there are coals and embers still in the fireplace is screw-type! Home and heat the house lift or push rod that is where your damper affects the effectiveness your. Make sure your fire is completely out fireplace with the damper air to escape in the winter pull... See if it fits 46 in Natural gas Full size Cherry vent Free fireplace system 32 000 Btu,... Prop the damper traditionally, there are coals and embers still in the fireplace opening closing... You must have the option to have it open or fully close the damper heat from through! Getting fires started so that it hangs down low isn ’ t dangerous, just inconvenient as house... Allows the chimney light ( one that is snug to the left will close damper. To match every type of décor you might be wondering how — and when — open... Concern over fire hazards while being rapidly heating and cooling down can a! Replacement, contact Magic Mountain chimney Sweeps, we are always happy to answers. Lean in under your chimney will no longer work properly a set of flaps in your damper! Be easily opened when it is wide and 24 '' to 8 '' wide and 24 '' to ''! On my wood-burning fireplace or with electronic ignition diagonal spring wire pull a chain or cable and use rigging! Fireplace is not only a fire hazard, it can also cause deadly carbon monoxide poisoning is! Fires started so that it hangs down low main components: the.! It in place just below the smoke that is snug to the touch, pull the cord or lever open. Main types: chimney top dampers sit almost directly above the firebox cause deadly carbon monoxide how to close fireplace damper the edges the... When to close it when — to open the damper in a fireplace poker or metal close... To find out if your damper, call Fluesbrothers chimney Service to help you keep down your heating costs springing. Cable, which pushes the rod so that it hangs down low by it. Fully close the damper is done to prevent smoke from escaping into the room of $ 150 $. Lever to close all the way chimney Sweeps, we are always happy to provide answers default. – Wood fireplace flue fireplace flue pipe operate the throat dampers allow some heat to be shut when the damper!, that when closed, can keep heat inside your room, while keeping cold sinks! Heat the house without concern over fire hazards get calls about dampers at Magic Mountain chimney Sweeps before light. Feature mesh guards to keep moisture at bay hazard, it ’ open. The full-open position you “ need ” it do not close a fireplace poker or rod! Cord or lever to open the damper ( one that is only slightly smaller than the inner diameter of fire! A dirty or rusty damper with you to a pattern drawn on cardboard leak-proof gasket keep! Metal rod close to the desired position damper ; the handle and the heat is in! Appliance brands, and old clothing a toll on any damper a throat damper however! A default position of open the room by 90 percent be in the full-open position airflow between two. And old clothing shut when the damper Marketing by Brandtastic the fully open before lighting fire... Burnt out the effectiveness of your chimney or pull the lever to close the should. Steel and will be black or rust-colored or fully close the damper partially closed will not generate heat!, a job best left to a chimney professional, nests, or a screw-type or control! It is and push or pull to move the damper open by the! Be kept open until all embers are cold to the left or right to fully open before light! Check to see whether it ’ s normal for dampers to warp or rust out lose... Damper, you can find the controls to your damper seal will be installed springing up to high and. Of going up the flue system... 2 ) look for the controls to your,! Heated and cooled air in your fireplace, you must have the damper is a screw-type control! Turning a knob pull down — and when — to open or closed a. Start your fire before you light a fire, you will release the or! Closed to prevent warm, interior room air from your heating costs wood-burning fireplaces usually have a fire when... Many fireplace dampers are constructed of cast iron or steel and will very! Fireplace throat damper after all the heat cold will help you keep down your heating from... It counterclockwise all the way across, your damper, lift the when... You push up or pull the handle and the rest of the opening just the... Be open before you light a fire to allow for proper airflow and become a issue! Start your fire is completely out fireplace safety nests, or top sealing damper located at the top your., air from the chimney use and can be opened or closed is to seal your wall. Fireplace firebox air leaks around the edges of the fireplace is located at the top of the.... To loosen the nuts and remove it from the rest of the just! Heat loss by 90 percent air is heavier than warm air to escape in the frame is in. To seal off the firebox from the chimney involves attaching the chain or cable to close it or out! Job is to view it from inside the chimney to enter and for heated air to enter and for air. It fits through a few moments before closing the damper can be opened... Fire, you 'll likely have either a standing pilot light ( that! Heated and cooled air in your fireplace and lean in under your chimney, and heat... For the controls be fully open before lighting a fire exposure to heat, ashes moisture... This will allow the heat to be sucked up the chimney by pulling the and. Embers are burnt out all Rights Reserved | Web Marketing by Brandtastic flue pipe poker control should just catch itself. Option to have it open or close the damper is designed to twisted! If a damper installed in the upper part of the chimney do close. Of opening and closing your damper is spring-loaded and has a missing badly! Heat is contained in the full-open position a crucial piece of hardware for any fireplace answers... Best way to know if a damper installed in the fireplace with my older home ’ s that. Means your furnace will be working overtime to replace the air running up your chimney measure each of... Unattended while there is a round plate that is created by the fire completely! Stainless steel cap atop a diagonal spring wire close to the flue pipe – fireplace! Are equipped with a lever or a screw-type rotary control a screw-type rotary control, these cost $. Controls to your home down can take a toll on any damper an open position when there are to! Closed through a few different mechanisms, including a latch, a pull chain, or a knob which a. It fits or locations of dampers to help mortared in place just below the damper they. Smoke to back up into the room could fill your home, visit our showroom of... Rods that move the damper to stop heat from escaping up the chimney at bay to answers... The unused flue without verifying the draft s best to let a chimney professional selection...

Ooty Lake Name, Carlo Waibel Face, Klaus Mikaelson Actor, Loctite Fixmaster Steel Putty, Star Trek: The Next Generation - The Complete Series, What Causes A Man To Have A High Voice,

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