Is this chimney/flue system safe

Old 10-11-18, 08:52 PM
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Is this chimney/flue system safe

House built in 1938. Fireplace has been used but not for a long time. We just bought the house and I guess a sweep to come inspect and clean. They were people by the flue system and advised not to use it. The picture is looking up through there damper from the fireplace. There are two flues with a space in between. It appears that the smoke and gases would get trapped between the flues but I know nothing about this kind of thing. Would appreciate any feedback.
Old 10-12-18, 04:19 AM
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I can't really make out what we are looking at in the pics.
Can you take photos from further back that shows more.

What does this mean?
They were people by the flue system and advised not to use it.
Does it mean a qualified sweep inspected it and said it was unsafe?
Did they explain in writing why?

You need to get someone who is certified to inspect wood burning fireplaces.
Most home insurance companies also require wood burning appliances to be approved and listed on insurance policies.
Old 10-12-18, 06:33 AM
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Sorry for the typo. Should have said:

"They were perplexed by the flue system and advised not to use it. "

I'm having a hard time getting a good pic but this is from a little farther back. I am trying to find a certified inspector for this but we live a good distance from anyone I have found so far.

Old 10-12-18, 07:34 AM
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Your local fire department may have a qualified inspector or know where to find one. Also as mentioned your insurance agent. Both of those sources need to be happy with the final result.

Old 10-18-18, 01:01 PM
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The clay liners, at least the small part visible in the photo, look good to my untrained eye. I'm not used to seeing two flues serving a single fireplace - is this a very large fireplace? What you need is a chimney inspector, which may or may not also be a chimney sweep. Ideally, the inspector should have a TV camera to check each liner. Can you find out the person who looked at the chimney and ask him what was wrong with it?

There is a national code "NFPA 211 Standard for Chimneys, Fireplaces, Vents, and Solid Fuel-Burning Appliances." There are sections of the code that cover design, maintenance, and inspection. Like most such codes, they only apply if the local authority having jurisdiction adopts them by ordinance, law, etc. Also, there are limitations on retroactivity.

There are three different inspection types, Level I, Level II, and Level III. Level III is the most rigorous, requiring inspection of inaccessible parts of the chimney, presumably with a TV camera. The code specifies under what circumstances each inspection type is required. The code doesn't specify what licensure, if any, applies to inspectors - only that they be "qualified." That would be up to your local building or code enforcement officials, if any. Many areas of the U.S., including mine, have no or only partial local building codes.

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