AD{TS3712831} ? PAGE 8 Thursday, January 08, 2015 ? THE EXPOSITOR

How to close up a fireplace for the season

Spring is a great time to prepare fireplaces for seasonal closing. A roaring fireplace on a chilly day provides a welcome, aesthetically appealing respite from the cold. Fireplaces are typically used throughout winter, but when spring rolls around, many homeowners no longer feel the need to light a fire. As fireplace season winds down, homeowners can take the following steps to close their fireplaces for the warm weather seasons ahead. Begin the cleanup Repeatedly lighting fires results in an accumulation of ash and residual wood debris. Clean out what you can by hand and discard the soot. To conduct a more thorough cleaning, use a high-powered garage vacuum to clear out any remaining ashes from crevices and other parts of the firebox. Hire a chimney sweep A fully functioning fireplace chimney should be swept annually by a certified chimney sweep. He or she will remove soot and any creosote from the inside of the chimney. Creosote is highly flammable and can cause considerable damage if it catches fire. A professional chimney sweeping also reduces the amount of dirt and odor that will continue to enter a home after the fireplace has been retired for the season. Damp spring weather can moisten soot trapped in a chimney, causing it to smell. Cleaning and deodorizing can help keep rooms fresh. Ask for an inspection Ask a chimney sweep to inspect your chimney in addition to cleaning it. A sweep can look for leaks and cracks, and he or she should also look at the flashing system and rain cap, which can prevent water infiltration. You don?t want to learn your chimney is in poor shape during a heavy spring rainfall. Ask that the pipes, brickwork and damper also be checked for functionality and good repair. Close the damper Homeowners should close the dampers on wood-burning fireplaces when closing their fireplaces for the season. Doing so prevents animals from making nests inside the chimney and possibly gaining entry into your home. Closing the damper also makes the home more efficient by not letting air escape through the chimney. Those with gas fireplaces should leave the damper open at all times to prevent a gas buildup in the home in the case of a gas leak. However, homeowners may want to extinguish the pilot light for a gas fireplace in the spring to reduce energy usage. Make it attractive Some homeowners choose to dress up a fireplace to make it look more appealing in the offseason. Flowers, plants, candles, or decorative accents can be placed in the firebox to add style to a home. When closing a fireplace for the season, homeowners can benefit from hiring a professional to ensure everything is done correctly and the fireplace will be in top shape and ready to warm everyone up next winter.

Twin City Realty Inc.

Brokerage

*Sales Representative **Broker ***Broker Manager CARIAH ALI* 519-732-2937 ELLEN ARSENAULT** 519-770-2556 ROB AVERY** 519-757-7993 KIM BAILEY-BROWN* 519-865-0078 HARRY BAZOIAN** 519-758-6801 DEBBIE BENNETT* 519-754-6553 DENISE BENOIT* 519-771-9011 JODI BROWN* 519-755-4384 TEDDY BUZEK* 519-717-6675 DONNA BYRON* 519-754-8159 CHRIS COSTABILE* 519-865-9517 ADAM DEGROOTE** 519-732-7724 DAN DIGNARD* 519-732-6325 KYLE DINSMORE 519-758-4270 ED DOUCET** 519-753-4663 WALLY DUFRAT* 519-752-5400 AL DUTKEWICH* 519-717-2497 RODNEY FELKA* 519-756-8111 ALEX GRINTON* 519-761-2417 GREG GROVER* 519-536-3168 DEB HALLORAN* 226-802-2850 LORI HANNA* 519-771-7599 APRIL HILL* 519-716-2369 KAREN HOBBS-THOMSON** 519-758-6778 VIC IEZZI* 519-755-0455 KYLE JANSINK* 519-771-9314 REBECCA JOHNSON* 519-755-1652 KEN KARAKAS* 519-720-2169 LUCIE KARAKAS* 519-756-8111 AJAY KAUSHIK* 519-759-5600 BARBARA KERR-WILKES* 519-756-8111 SHANON KNIGHTS* 519-209-2274 JAN KNOTT* 519-756-8111 ANA LAHOSKY* 519-771-3911 ANDY LAIR** 519-750-4636 SHARON LATIMER* 519-732-7191 SHIRLEY LAWRENCE** 519-759-5494 JUDY LILLICO** 519-756-8111 JANICE MACAULAY** 519-755-9409 SHAWN MacDONALD* 519-771-8414 JON MACHADO* 519-209-2200 ADAM MARSHALL** 519-757-9544 ANGIE McKAY* 519-755-4814 ADRIAN McSTRAVICK* 519-755-8816 RICK MISURA* 519-754-6095 WILLIE MORLEY* 519-771-5499 BRIAN NORTH** 519-754-7308 GARRY NORTH** 519-732-2639

515 Park Rd. N. 519-756-8111 ? 519-759-5494 1 Grand River St. N., Paris 519-442-0005

* Based on 2014 sales of Listings sold gathered from the Brantford Regional Real Estate Association and Multiple Listings Services for Brantford and Brant County

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WALLY OLIVIERI* 519-770-5478 JULIE OVINGTON* 519-756-8111 JAS PATARA* 519-754-8845 JON PICKERING* 519-774-4406 JESSICA ROMANOWSKI* 519-362-5284 ADRIENNE ROSS* 519-755-7316 DAVE SCHOUTEN* 519-758-4580 AMY SHEFFAR* 226-387-4191 SUSAN SHEPPARD* 519-757-7399 LORI SHIPMAN-PETERSON* 519-770-9890 MOSES SILVA*** 519-756-8111 RICK & KATHY SLAVIN* 519-770-2907 or 519-755-8705 NATASHA SMITH* 519-756-8111 PAMELA SOLAK* 519-732-7805 TODD STONES* 519-754-5994 TERRY SUMMERHAYS* 519-802-8770 WADE TABAK* 519-771-9233 JEFF THIBODEAU* 519-861-1385 SHERRY TOMLINSON* 519-802-5410 ED TUOKKO* 519-771-4646 JODY TYSOSKI* 519-750-2212 PAULA TYSOSKI* 519-761-3737 DARRYL VAN SICKLE* 519-802-8419 SANDRA & STEVE VARGA* 519-209-3936 LORI VENN* 519-770-9129 TED WARD-GRIFFIN** 519-756-8111 LYNDA WILCOX* 519-757-5532 JIM WILLIAMS** 519-755-6558 KELLI ZAVARELLA* 519-756-8111

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