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Smoke Chamber Parging

A smoke chamber sits between the firebox and the chimney flue and is there to funnel smoke and combustion gases up into the chimney and away from the home. Problems with a smoke chamber need to be dealt with swiftly and correctly.

The Chimney Guys provides smoke chamber parging services throughout the Greater Columbus, Ohio, region. Parging (a fancy name for “smoothing out”) is needed for most smoke chambers at one point. It’s definitely needed for older historic chimney systems.

Smoky chimney and fireplace repairs in Columbus OH, Amlin OH, Lewis Center OHIssues We Address

As you can imagine, a smoke chamber has to deal with a lot of heat and corrosive acids. Over the years, its surfaces can develop cracks, splits and gaps that allow intense heat and dangerous gases to escape.

When this happens, materials adjacent to the chamber can dry out, crumble and become prime fuel for a fire. Smoke chambers are the cause of many of the chimney and house fires reported each year in Ohio and throughout the U.S.

Smoke Chamber Specs

A properly built smoke chamber will be of the correct depth, height and width to work with the connected fireplace and chimney. It looks like an upside-down funnel – wide at the bottom and narrower at the top where it feeds the chimney flue. Poor construction causes a lot of problems with smoke chambers, but the main problem we see is rough and damaged chamber surfaces that occur when parging has never been done.

Smoke Chambers in Historic Homes

Owners of historic homes in the Columbus area have a particular concern. Smoke chambers built 100 and more years ago typically have a “corbelled” design, which is like stair steps inside the chamber. These steps are notorious for trapping creosote, which is highly flammable and can be obstructive to drafting.

Does Your Smoke Chamber Need Attention?

It's hard to know exactly if your smoke chamber needs to be serviced. Annual inspections can help you keep your fireplace and chimney in top shape. If it has been a while since your last service, watch for these three signs:

  1. Smoke is backing up into the fireplace
  2. Fires are hard to start because of an insufficient draft
  3. There’s a burnt-asphalt smell and fume odors when you use the fireplace

Only a proper inspection will tell us the exact condition of the smoke chamber. If you notice the above signs, or if it’s been more than a year since your last inspection, call us.

The Parging Process

After confirming that your smoke chamber meets standards for size and shape, we can move on to the parging process. Here, we coat the surfaces of the chamber with a special refractory mortar to cover gaps and eliminate jagged edges and rough surfaces.

The parging material we use is designed to hold up to the high heat and furnace-like effects inside an active smoke chamber. It’s the best and safest material for restoring drafting efficiency and safety to a chimney system.

Chimney inspection in Columbus OH and New Albany OH

Your Columbus Smoke Chamber Experts

The Chimney Guys are standing by to inspect and parge your smoke chamber. We also offer certified chimney sweeping, chimney repairs, system inspections and the installation of fireplaces and stoves.

Since 2004, we’ve served customers in Columbus OH, Pataskala OH, Gahanna OH, Reynoldsburg OH, Westerville OH, Heath OH, Canal Winchester OH, Powell OH, Groveport OH, Hilliard OH, Dublin OH, and many other Ohio communities.

If you have any questions about your smoke chamber or if you would like to schedule an appointment with our expert technicians, we are ready to help!

Reach us at (614) 446-1221 or get in touch with our contact form.