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My heater has a chimney?

by The Chimney Guy

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The Chimney Guy

Many of the calls I receive during this busy season in Delaware County, Pennsylvania, are from homeowners who ask this question about their oil or gas heater chimney.

The conversation may go something like this:

"My heater has been 'tagged' by the utility company. They won't turn it back on until I get the heater chimney cleaned. My heater has a chimney? It was serviced last year, and the heater guy told me it was ok."


When it gets to the point of an emergency, the fee can run considerably higher than a regular maintenance fee. Maintaining your heater flue by having a certified chimney sweep inspect it on a yearly basis and clean it if necessary will help avoid that.

 emergency heater flue liner

To avoid a situation like this, here are 5 recommendations:

  1. Chimney Cleaning and Inspection yearly by a Certified Chimney Sweep (as suggested by the Chimney Safety Institute of America, who certifies local chimney sweeps every 3 years).
  2. Make sure there is a chimney cap at the top of your heater chimney, which protects the inside from the deterioration of weather or animals getting inside.
  3. Having your heater serviced and asking the contractor about the condition of the bottom of the chimney, if any followup is recommended. If you don't ask, you won't know for sure.
  4. Observe: Use your eyeballs to see any changes on the outside of your chimney, missing mortar, loose brick, stains, cracks, or lopsided cap. The situation will only get worse.
  5. If you change or plan to change your hot water heater or your heating system in any way, ask about whether the chimney is in good shape. Replacing your older system for a higher efficiency heater can create condensation which may damage the inside of your chimney liner. A chimney relining system, installed by a professional chimney sweep is a solution to consider.

So, Yes, your heater has a chimney, yes, it is important to have it working properly to vent the heater gases like carbon monoxide, and yes, you can do some easy things to maintain your home heating safety.

Don't make an ash of yourself, get your heater chimney checked!

The Chimney Guy

chimney sweep

Gallagher's Chimney Service

707 BelmontAve.

Milmont Park, PA 19033

610 522 9595

fireplace smoke

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