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Today's homes are being built more weather tight and energy conscious than ever before. In response to current trends, architects are designing fireplaces that may suit the homeowner's wishes but may in fact make it susceptible to venting failure or smoking. We now have scientific data that explains the relationship between a fireplace and house. All fireplaces are to a degree susceptible to smoking . This guide was prepared to assist homeowners with mitigating the forces that cause fireplaces to smoke.
The location, type and design of the fireplace are part of the house and therefore a component of a system. They all must work together. As you will see, there are many factors about your house and how you use it that affect the fireplace and vice versa. Keep in mind a few key concepts: 1) Proper user education can overcome most smoking fireplaces.2) A hot flue is a happy flue.3) Externally situated chimneys are colder and therefore more prone to smoking. 4) Most homes don't have enough fresh outdoor air infiltration to balance the warm air rising in the home (The Stack Effect). 5) Aside from all else, the proper installation and use of glass doors is the cheapest and single most effective measure to take against smoking.
Other options at your dealers disposal include extending the chimney height, installing powered and passive air supply ventilators, and installing a powered ventilation fan connected to the two major exhaust fans in the home, usually the clothes dryer and kitchen exhaust vent. When they are turned on the fresh air vent is activated to keep the house balanced.
Understand that depressurized houses are susceptible to backdrafting exhaust fumes from water heaters, boilers, kitchen stoves, clothes dryers, fireplaces, and furnaces. This is all the more reason to test the house pressure profile. Because backdrafting can be a source of carbon monoxide poisoning (CO) we strongly recommend that every home be equipped with a CO alarm as well as smoke alarms.
If a house is experiencing smoking,"roll out", or backdrafting, stop using that offending appliance until it is corrected. You could be exposed to CO and soot up your house. This guide is not intended to be all inclusive. There are others factors that may need to be addressed with any particular house as each house has its own characteristics and users. We make no warranty of the measures herein nor of the omission of others. If you are experiencing problems, contact your dealer for support.
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Buckley Rumford Fireplaces
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