Annual inspections of chimneys are crucial to reducing the risks involving fireplaces. Among the threats that can be eliminated is an extremely dangerous fire resulting from pyrolysis. Here, trusted chimney sweep Batts’ Chimney Services talks about pyrolysis, how it occurs, and how it can be prevented.
What Is Pyrolysis?
Pyrolysis refers to the thermal decomposition of materials at elevated temperatures. When wood and other organic materials decompose due to pyrolysis, a fire can ignite when exposed to heat and oxygen. Wood that has been affected by pyrolysis exhibits no external signs that the hazardous process has taken place. The decomposition of the wood can take years, and then, without warning, a typical fire in a fireplace causes the wood within the perimeter to go up in flames.
How Does Pyrolysis Occur and How Can It Be Prevented?
Using a fireplace in your home could bring about pyrolysis in various ways.
- A damaged flue or firebox. Chimney liners and fireboxes are designed to withstand exceptionally high temperatures caused by fires. If either component deteriorates, the combustible parts of the house would no longer be sufficiently protected. One of the possible results of a crack in the chimney flue is the wood nearby starts the process of pyrolysis. Once the wood reaches its ignition point, a fire in the fireplace could cause the wood to burst into flasks. To prevent this, let chimney repair specialists address any issues with your chimney or fireplace before they spin out of control.
- Improper installation of heating devices. If, for example, wood framing in your house is too close to the chimney flue or fireplace, it could create a serious hazard. The heating appliance is not code-compliant since it is installed near combustible materials. Wood siding, wood floors, or wood trim could also be affected. This is why the installation of heating devices should only be performed by chimney experts.
When it comes to chimney cleaning and maintenance, Batts’ Chimney Services is the name to trust. Our skilled team aims to deliver the highest quality of workmanship and customer service every homeowner deserves. Call (256) 906-1139 in Northern Alabama or (205) 828-3899 in the Greater Birmingham area, or fill out our convenient online form to set up an appointment.