Why do you need a chimney balloon? Well, chimneys are not only quaint, but very handy when you have lit a fire in the fireplace. Not only does the entire house get warmed, but all the smoke is also removed. But what about the times when you do not have a fire running at your fireplace? Not only is the chimney allowing all the needed heat to escape from your house, but it is also allowing the cold outside air to come in. This is where chimney balloons come in handy.
Chimney balloons are available in various shapes and sizes at any hardware store. Before buying a balloon, you will have to measure the dimensions of your chimney to ensure that you can buy a balloon of the right size. There are also some safety tips that you should keep in mind when you are using a chimney balloon. Let us take a look at them.
1. Wear Safety Goggles
Chimneys can be nasty dark places that are full of soot and who knows what else. Whether you are sticking your head into your chimney to measure its dimensions or to fit a chimney balloon, it is a good idea to wear safety goggles. This will help any unwanted objects from falling into your eye. This is also important when you consider that the first reaction when a foreign particle enters the eye is to jerk your head. Doing so in the confined spaces of a chimney does not spell good news for your head and can sometimes lead to serious injuries. So play it safe and always wear safety goggles when you are working inside the chimney.
2. Check the Inflation Tube
All chimney balloons come with an inflation tube. This tube doubles as a safety device. If someone accidentally starts a fire below that chimney, the heat from the fire will cause the inflation tube to deflate. This will allow harmful smoke to escape from the room without harming its occupants. Always check that your chimney balloon comes with an inflation tube and that is hanging down over the fireplace.
3. Skimping May Cause an Accident
Many people debate the utility of chimney balloons. After all, it is far cheaper to stuff rags or a pillow into the chimney to block the passage of air. Sure, while this may be almost as effective as a chimney balloon, keep in mind that any rag, pillow, or other chimney stuffing does not come with a built in safety device. What if you forget and accidentally start a fire while your chimney is blocked? What if someone else does? The accumulation of carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide in a room caused by a fire that has been lit under a blocked chimney can be potentially fatal.
4. Hang a Placard
Most chimney balloons come with a safety placard that states that a chimney balloon has been installed and the fireplace should not be used until the balloon is removed. Do not put that placard among a stack of old magazines and forget about it. Whenever you install a chimney balloon, hang the safety placard in a prominent place near the fireplace.