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What Is a Chimney Flue?

With great comfort comes great responsibility. What we’re trying to say is, having a fireplace is awesome, but it comes with some responsibility. One of those responsibilities is understanding the different parts of your fireplace and chimney so that you can operate it safely.

But don’t worry—the experts at Capitol Chimney are here to help. Today let’s talk about the chimney flue.

The flue is the chamber in your chimney that allows the smoke and other byproducts from your fireplace to escape. If you have more than one fireplace in your house, it’s likely that you have more than one flue for each of the fireplaces that vent to your chimney.

The chimney flue is a very crucial component of your chimney—without it, all the smoke, gases, and harmful byproducts from combustion would have nowhere to go but back inside your home.

The Right Sized Chimney Flue

At Capitol Chimney Service, a lot of the problems and repairs we see involve improperly sized chimney flues. Basically, how big your fireplace opening is will determine what size chimney flue you need.

So what happens if you have the wrong size chimney flue? First, if your chimney flue is too small, you will likely have a problem with the smoke from your fire making its way out of the flue. If smoke is re-entering your house from your fireplace, it could be that your flue is too small!

If your chimney flue is too short, this can lead to smoking problems as well. Raising your chimney can help alleviate this problem.

Covering Your Chimney Flue

If you don’t cover the top of your chimney flue, it’s likely that outdoor elements like rain, wind, and cold will make their way inside your home. Obviously, this isn’t ideal! At the same time, you don’t want your chimney flue to be covered when you use your fireplace. After all, you need the smoke to be able to escape.

So what’s the solution? A chimney damper! You’ll just need to remember to open it when you want to use your fireplace.

Lining Your Chimney Flue

If you’re starting to think your chimney flue is high maintenance, you might be right. You have to size it and cover it, and you also have to line it!

When you use your fireplace, the byproducts from the production can wear down your chimney flue as well as the masonry. A chimney flue liner will help prevent these surfaces from deteriorating over time.

During an annual chimney inspection (which is recommended by the National Fire Protection Association), a professional can let you know if your chimney flue needs to be relined.

If you live in an older house, it’s possible you don’t have a chimney liner at all. Call us today to have a chimney liner installed in DC.  Located in Silver Spring, Maryland, Capitol Chimney Service offers a wide variety of chimney and fireplace services throughout the Maryland, DC, and Virginia areas. Our goal is to make your chimney and fireplace cleaner, safer, and more energy-efficient. Give us a call for chimney and fireplace cleaning, repair, installation, and more!

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