Clean your chimney before firing up your fireplace - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Clean your chimney before firing up your fireplace

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(WSIL) -- With the cooler weather here, many people may want to start using fireplaces to warm their homes, but experts warn you should inspect your chimney first.

Herrin Fire Chief Shawn Priddy says taking a short time for a safety inspection, can make all the difference.

Kevin Vinyard from Soot Yourself Chimney Service in Marion agrees, "For every chimney I'm doing. We figure there's 15 out there that need to be done."

The family business has provided their services for decades, "We do inspections for insurance companies, real estate companies, new home buyers."

He says having a dirty chimney could cause chimney fires or allow carbon monoxide to be produced into your home from smoke build up.

Vinyard adds, "It will bust concert blocks, clay tile, liners, brick, it'll take the tinsel steel out of stainless steel liner."

No matter how you keep warm, Priddy says it's important to have smoke detectors and an escape plan in place in case a fire happens.

Priddy also says, "Heaters shouldn't be plugged in extension cords outlet. Candles are one of the number one causes of house fires." 

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