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Magic Sweep Blog

The Importance of Chimney Relining

Your liner is one of the most important part of your chimney. The liner has many important jobs, and it requires regular maintenance to function properly. When your liner wears out, it requires professional repairs or even a relining to restore it. However, in order to find the damage you must stay on top of your routine chimney inspections.

Common Liner Damage

The Importance of Chimney Relining - Chesapeake VA - Magic SweepChimney liners become damaged over time with worn out clay tiles, crumbling joints, and deteriorated lining systems. Animal intrusion, creosote buildup, and water damage are the most common causes of liner damage, and our chimney sweeps are experienced in diagnosing and repairing these problems.

Many older masonry chimneys have old and deteriorated clay tiles, and they may not have a liner at all. When this is the case, the system need to be relined. In some instances, the liner just needs minor repairs. It’s important to hire a professional for these repairs, and they can fix it swiftly and correctly.

Why Repair the Liner

Your chimney liner has an important job to do. It protects the house from heat that can weaken adjacent woodwork to cause an accidental fire. It protects your masonry from corrosive byproducts that can shorten the life of your chimney, drop its efficiency, and raise fire risk. A correctly-sized liner provides the flue with optimum airflow, efficiency, and safety. A relining is especially essential after a new installation to ensure the flue is the right size for new capacity.

Relining with Magic Sweep

In the past, the best solution for chimney relining is to pull the old liner out and replace it completely with a stainless steel liner. Stainless steel is the best option due to the durability, and it is safe for use with all fuel types. Because of the durability and dependability of stainless steel, they are the only liner with a lifetime warranty. The downside of stainless steel is the cost.

However, we do have other options as well. Our cast-in-place liners allow our customers to pay less money and get the same protection. If you’re interested in a cast-in-place liner, you should schedule a level two inspection right now with our chimney experts. Call Magic Sweep at 757-523-2400. Are you a realtor or property manager? We can work with you as well.

HeatShield Protects Your Chimney From Extreme Heat

All of the parts of your chimney system work together for one thing–to protect your home from fire and exposure to harmful gases. The chimney is made up of many parts that work together to keep it working properly year after year. One of the most important and somewhat overlooked parts of the system is the chimney liner, sometimes called the flue liner because it literally lines the flue. Replacing or repairing the liner can be expensive and time-consuming, but not when you use HeatShield. It protects your chimney from extreme heat, keeps the fire in its place, and is safe HeatShield Protects Your Chimney - Chesapeake VA - Magic Sweepfor use with all fuel types.

HeatShield Cerfractory Technology

This “cerfractory” technology was developed in Europe over 20 years ago and combines the strength of hybrid ceramic and the heat resistance of refractory cement. It comes to the chimney company as a dry powder, so we only mix what amount is necessary so we don’t waste any HeatShield and our customers don’t waste money. This product has been tested for heat resistance and strength, and is listed to UL 1777 standards for chimney liner systems in residential homes. We can use HeatShield to restore or line your chimney system this summer!

Chimney Cleaning with HeatShield

HeatShield Poultice Creosote Remover (PCR) [CeCure® Sleeve] is applied to the flue walls by using a custom-made foam applicator blade that is attached to a pulley at the top of the flue. As the blade is pulled upward, the HeatShield Poultice Creosote Remover is applied to the walls where it dissolves and absorbs creosote (even 3rd degree glazed creosote). Once it dries, it falls off the walls, leaving a clean surface. Once the flue is clean, HeatShield Cerfractory Flue Sealantcan be applied for heat protection.

Repairing the Liner with HeatShield

Joint Repair – A custom foam applicator is placed below the affected areas of the flue and attached to a pulley at the top. HeatShield Cerfractory Flue Sealant is placed in the applicator and it is pulled upward, depositing the sealant into voids and cracks. The applicator blade smooths the sealant as it is pulled upward.
Resurfacing – The custom foam applicator is placed all the way at the bottom of the flue, attached to the pulley at the top. First, a tie coat is applied to the flue to clean it, and then HeatShield Cerfractory Flue Sealant is applied to the entire flue at ¼ inch thickness as the applicator is pulled upward again. The job is double-checked with a video scan.
CeCure® Relining – Magic Sweep can reline the chimney system completely using CeCure® Sleeve Relining System. First, the HeatShield Cerfractory Flue Sealant is applied to the flue with a drying accelerator added. Next, a custom fitted CeCure® Sleeve is attached to the top, where it is positioned in place as the applicator blade is sent down again. Finally, another layer is applied over the CeCure® Sleeve to finish the job. The job is verified using a video scan. The CeCure® Sleeve Relining System is safe for use with all fuel types, and the CeCure® Sleeve itself is a high-density, low-profile ceramic insulation sleeve reinforced with stainless steel fabric.

Let Magic Sweep take care of your chimney with HeatShield. Call us at 757-523-2400 today or request an appointment online.

The Convenience of Gas Logs

Whether you’re looking for a little ambiance, some extra warmth, or even making due with a worn out chimney, gas logs can add to your home in more ways than one! In fact, gas logs are growing in popularity among home and business owners. What’s the big deal? Once you find out all these products have to offer, you won’t choose anything different!

Easy Install

Depending on what type of log set you choose, you may not even need a vent/chimney. Many gas log sets are safe for indoor use without a vent. These are also perfect for bypassing chimneys in disrepair atogether. This is why it’s important to involve a professional from the beginning when you’re making a change or planning a new install. Only a professional can definitively assess the situation, measure, order, and install the right unit for you. Showrooms across the country are filled with returns that homeowners have ordered online that were inappropriate for their home, their fuel type, or didn’t fit in their space. When you choose to work with Magic Sweep, you can rest assured that the installation will be without hassle and headache.

Easy to Use

Gas logs are easy to use when you follow directions. Most light by a switch or may require the use of a match. Through the winter there may be a pilot light burning, and this can be shut off during the offseason. Gas fires are easily controlled with a remote control. When you’re ready to shut the fire down for the night, it just requires the flip of a switch of the turn of a knob. This creates freedom that doesn’t exist with a wood-burning fireplace. A gas fire can ignite and extinguish instantly, cool off quicker, and result in less accidental burns. These products are also easy to maintain. All you have to do is dust around the fireplace on a regular basis, remove debris from the area, clean the burners (logs), and check connections.

Minimal Maintenance

Despite the convenience of gas logs, they still require routine professional maintenance in order to stay efficient and safe. Homeowners should have a professional come into service gas fire appliances at least annually in which the flue and unit are cleaned, connections are checked, glass is checked, and the unit is tested. These annual appointments can prevent serious damage and injury caused by neglect.

Learn more about gas log sets and how they can benefit you. If you start now, you can have the work done this summer, and your fireplace will be ready for the first fire this fall.

Call Magic Sweep at 757-523-2400, or contact us online.

Get Your Air Ducts Cleaned

You’ve successfully survived cold weather for one more year, but now it’s time for summer heat. It’s now officially summer, and much of America has switched the thermostat over to “cool.” Most homeowners only worry about the way their central air system will affect their utility bill, but it affects so much more than that! You can save money on utilities AND improve the air quality in your home by scheduling an air duct cleaning with Magic Sweep.

Clean Ducts, Clean Air

Your central air duct system is not a closed system. It cools indoor air with a refrigerant and distributes it throughout the house via vents. Although the air must flow through a filter to enter the air duct system, there are particles that can get through. Over time these particles become pollutants and contaminants. Common nastiness we see in air duct systems include animal hair (dander), mold spores, dust, rodent droppings, and more. Some materials appear as dust, but are actually dead skin cells carrying bacteria and pollen that contributes to allergies. If you haven’t had your air ducts cleaned in the last twelve months, they may have one or more of the aforementioned materials.

What to Expect

When you hire the professionals to clean your air duct, you can count on a job well done. We use an industrial vacuuming system that works under negative pressure to pull dislodged contaminants straight out of the system without allowing any to escape back into your home. We get the job done in just a few hours, and your family will be safer and healthier. Not only do we draw out contaminants with our vacuum system, but we are also able to remove the dangerous buildup of a lint-type material that can catch fire–especially if your duct system is also used for your home heating. Don’t trust the amateurs with your safety. Call Magic Sweep for professionalism and courteous air duct service.

When to Schedule

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, you should schedule an air duct cleaning if:
-Mold growth is present and visible on ducts or other components of heating and cooling system.
-Ducts are infested with rodents or insects.
-Ducts are clogged with debris including dust or particles visible at vents.

There may be an easy solution for your ventilation problems, so schedule an inspection today!  If you’ve noticed your utility bill has increased, but your thermostat is the same, you may have a problem with the system. If anyone in your family suffers from chronic respiratory issues, you may have a problem. A clean system means smoother airflow, and that means less stress on the system and a cheaper bill.

Schedule your air vent cleaning today by calling 757-523-2400!

Consider a New Chimney Cap or Damper This Summer

Your chimney may be done for the winter, but it may be costing you this summer, and you don’t even know it yet. If your chimney has missing or damaged parts, you may be losing conditioned air through the flue, or warm air may be coming in by way of the flue. As your central air system works harder to cool the air in your home, your utility bill goes up!


How a Cap Can Help

A chimney cap is installed on the top of your chimney and serves as a roof. It also keeps animals out and protects your flue against water and weather year-round. You can even buy a specific model that deflects wind away from the flue opening, keeping gusts from affecting your fire in the winter and your central air in the summer. Having a cap installed this spring will not only save you on utilities but will also protect your entire system from water damage and damage from animal intrusion. Choosing the right cap for your chimney can be difficult. Professionals at Magic Sweep can help. Your chimney may be best protected with a new damper–a top seal damper.


Energy Saving Damper

You can save even more money by having a new top-sealing damper installed before the weather gets too warm. Sometimes called an energy-saving damper, the top-sealing damper kills two birds with one stone. It works as a chimney cap while a fire burns in the fireplace, and it is a tight-sealing damper while engaged. Not only does it act as a damper, but it seals the entire chimney system from the top with a tight seal. Neither water or animals can penetrate a top-sealing damper. You can avoid losing air through this new damper as well! The best way to close your system off for summer is with a top-sealing damper. It will keep humid air from mingling with the soot and creosote in your flue, cut down on odors, and protect the system until it’s time for a fire in fall.


Call a Professional

Magic Sweep is your #1 choice for chimney maintenance and repair in Hampton Roads. Our chimney sweeps are certified, insured, and experienced choosing and installing chimney caps and dampers. Our top priority is safety and efficiency for our neighbors and customers, so we only carry the best in brands and models.

Are you tired of spending too much money on your AC every summer? You may be surprised how much you’ll save with a new cap or damper–not just in utility bills, but also in prevention. Installing a top-sealing damper or cap now can protect your chimney and prevent costly damage later.

Call Magic Sweep today at 757-523-2400 or request an appointment for your home or rental now.