NFPA 211: Standard for Chimneys, Fireplaces, Vents, and Solid Fuel-Burning Appliances requires a Level II/Real Estate Inspection upon the sale or transfer of a property. When you are buying a house, it is important to know everything about the different systems in that house, including the chimney and fireplace system, which is commonly overlooked. The chimney system may include the fireplace, wood stove, pellet stove, furnace or boiler and water heater; All very important components which can result in an unsafe environment and costly repairs.
Carbon monoxide poisoning is one illness that homeowners do not know enough about. This is another main reason to have the chimney inspected from one of our Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA)-certified chimney technicians. When gas and oil burn in vented heating systems – in order to produce household heat – the dangerous fumes that are by-products of combustion range from soot (particulate matter) to nitrogen dioxide (also toxic) to acidic water vapors formed when moisture condenses. None of these pollutants should be allowed to leak from the chimney into your living space. In addition to carrying off toxic gases, chimneys also create the draft (flow of air) that provides the proper air and fuel mixture for efficient operation of the heating appliance – whether a furnace or boiler.
Many people believe that the home inspector examines the chimney as carefully as the electrical, plumbing, and other systems in the home, but, in fact, a home inspector is not required to closely inspect a chimney nor are they trained properly. An Inspector has general knowledge of the systems within the house. This is why you should always contact a professional chimney company to schedule a Real Estate Inspection of the home you want to buy. The Chimney Chap is proud to offer chimney inspections for real estate transactions from our Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA)-certified chimney technicians. They are trained and experienced to find any potential problems in a chimney that you need to know about before purchasing a home.
You may be familiar with the basic chimney inspections that The Chimney Chap performs when we do our annual chimney sweeping services. This is known as a Level 1 Chimney Inspection, which refers to the three levels of chimney inspection set by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). A chimney inspection for real estate transactions is classified as a Level 2 Inspection and is more detailed than the basic Level 1. According to the CSIA, this level of inspection includes an examination of the accessible portions of the exterior and interior of the chimney, including attics, basements, and crawl spaces. This inspection is more in-depth and addresses proper clearances from combustibles. You will also receive a video recording of the entire inspection of the interior of the chimney, which you can use as evidence when negotiating with the homeowner on repairing any problems found in the inspection.