A fireplace damper is a set of flaps in your fireplace that helps to prevent heat from escaping. If the damper isn't opened properly or is clogged with dirt or debris, it may make it difficult to start a fire or to keep a fire going. If this is the case, most dampers can be cleaned with minimal effort. Occasionally, you may need to replace a fireplace damper.
Step 1 - Obtain a Replacement Damper
Before removing your existing damper, determine the size, make and model. Visit a hardware or home improvement store to purchase a replacement damper of the same size and design.
Step 2 - Remove the Existing Damper
Wearing protective safety equipment like a mask and gloves, carefully remove the existing damper from inside of the fireplace and store it in a place out of the way of your work. Most dampers will be bolted in to the fireplace, though some may be attached with screws. The damper itself may be dirty, so you may wish to have towels or a tarp prepared to carry the damper.
Step 3 - Install the New Damper
Follow the instructions for installing the new damper as listed by the manufacturer on the package. Most damper installation projects require minimal tools and experience, and all of the materials that you'll need should be included with the new damper itself.