Our Company Blog

Benefits Of Having A Chimney Cap

Does your chimney need more protection? Here at Mountain Man Fireplace & Chimney, we can set you up right! We offer crown repair services, waterproofing products, inspections, sweepings, and a whole lot more! All of these things do a lot for your chimney, but there is one thing we’d really like to focus on today – chimney caps.

Here are some reasons why you should have a chimney cap installed as soon as possible!

Reduce Water Intake

Too much moisture can turn into a big problem when it comes to maintaining the health of your chimney. When your brick absorbs water, you start to see lots of issues arise such as rot, rust, stains, and more! These things all wear on your chimney, leaving you with a big mess and lots of costly repairs ahead of you.

Chimney caps sit overtop your chimney and prevent water from running down the inside of it. Heavy rains won’t be something you have to worry about anytime soon. Invest in one today!

Prevent Animal Entry

It’s common knowledge that birds, squirrels, and other woodland critters love to set up camp in chimneys. And we can’t blame them! It’s warm, cozy, and they’re completely surrounded by a strong, durable structure. Unfortunately, their nesting materials can cause blockages and fire hazards, and it puts the animals themselves in a dangerous situation, as well.

Chimney caps prevent animal entry so that there is no risk of something getting in, only to discover there’s not an easy way out. Having one installed will do wonders in keeping your home and family as safe as possible.

Minimize Chances Of Fire

Chimney caps are known to go by a different name, spark arrestors, from time to time. That’s right, these metal devices can make a big difference when it comes to keeping your roof protected. When stray flames, sparks, or embers make their way up your chimney, your chimney cap will put them out before your roof potentially catches fire.

Do The Right Thing – Work With Us Today!

Chimney caps are a necessary component for allowing your fireplace to function as efficiently as possible. In fact, the Underwriters Laboratory requires that a chimney cap is installed in order for a chimney lining system to meet their highly reputable list of standards.

Whether you need a new chimney cap installed, your old chimney cap replaced, or you simply need a few repairs done on your current one, the staff at Mountain Man Fireplace & Chimney cap help! No matter what type, size, or material you’re chimney is, we have the right products for you!

We are trained and certified to meet all your chimney and fireplace needs. Give us a call today!

By Jake Johnson on May 8th, 2017 | Tagged with: Tags: , , , | Leave a Comment

What Causes Chimney Odors?

Are you facing issues with bad smells coming from your fireplace? You are not alone! It’s common for homeowners to face chimney odors from time to time (especially as temps start to rise), so don’t think that something is wrong with your chimney or with the way you maintain it.

There are a few main things that can cause bad odors to seep out of your fireplace. Knowing what these are and how to prevent them, will help you stay prepared year after year, so your home doesn’t stink whenever spring rolls around. Learn more below!

Negative Air Pressure

When the months are cold, the heat from your home and fireplace rises up through your chimney and escapes outside. This is how fireplaces are meant to function – any smoke, gases, and toxins make their way out and take any nasty smells with them. This leaves your home feeling fresh and keeps your family safe from inhaling any potentially harmful fumes.

Yet, in the summer time, the air outside is warmer than your home. This causes the airflow to reverse sending gusts of smelly air into your living room. You can try opening a window to help balance the pressure throughout your home – some find that this works great! Otherwise, a strong damper with a tight seal will be your best bet for keeping these unpleasant odors outside where they belong.

Creosote Build-Up

Another problem that can cause excessive odors is creosote build-up. The CSIA stresses the importance of annual inspections and cleanings and this is part of the reason why! Creosote has a distinct odor and, the more of it you have, the worse the smell is going to be – it’s as simple as that.

By scheduling a cleaning, you will help your home stay fresher. And this doesn’t just help with bad smells… it keeps your home safer, as well! Creosote is very flammable, so higher amounts of it increase your chances of chimney fires. Schedule your next cleaning today, so you can rest easy knowing your fireplace is in great condition every time you go to use it.

Birds & Other Animals

If the smell isn’t coming from the chimney itself, it could very well be caused by animals. Birds and other critters often enter the chimney, looking for a cozy spot to rest, then can’t manage to find their way back out. They leave droppings, which stink up the place, and if they can’t get out, they eventually pass away. Then, things really get bad!

Prevent animal entry by having a chimney cap installed. Chimney caps are great for keeping countless creatures at bay, and they keep your chimney dry and free from debris, as well! It’s a smart and cost-effective investment for any home – purchase one today!

If you need help with chimney odors, hire Mountain Man Fireplace and Chimney to inspect your system. We can track the issue and resolve it, so your home will be back to smelling great in no time!

By Jake Johnson on April 21st, 2017 | Tagged with: Tags: , , | Leave a Comment

How Water Impacts Your Chimney

Spring is here! We are all excited about sunny days and warm weather, but we may have to prepare for some rainy days before we get there. Springtime brings about lots of moisture, so don’t forget to prepare your chimney for storms and wet weather. Getting things patched up and protected ahead of time will save you a lot of stress down then line! Call on our experts today.

Damaging Effects of Water

Many homeowners are surprised to discover that bricks are actually quite absorbent. Chimneys are known for being strong, hard, and sturdy, so it’s hard to imagine that a little bad weather will wear it down. Unfortunately, too much exposure to moisture can cause lots of issues! Check out just some of these by reading below.

  • Freeze/Thaw Effect: We are no stranger to cold winters. When your brickwork soaks in water throughout spring, this liquid ends up freezing and expanding when temperatures drop later in the year. When it expands, so does your brick! It thaws back out in the warm months, causing your chimney to settle. All of that wear and tear puts a lot of excess pressure on your system, as a whole!
  • Rust: There are a lot of metal components to your chimney. When these parts are exposed to water time and time again, they begin to rust and break down. This only allows more water to seep in, making your problems even worse! Prevent rust by investing in leak repair and waterproofing services right away.
  • Mortar Deterioration: When your mortar starts to crack and flake, this is a clear cut sign that you need some professional help – and fast! At Mountain Man Fireplace & Chimney, we offer tuckpointing services, so that your mortar will look like new again in no time. We make this complicated process look easy with our precision and dedication to customer satisfaction. Give us a call to learn more!
  • Stains: Water problems can cause issues with your chimney’s appearance, as well! Water stains will pop up throughout your brickwork and can even work their way to your interior walls and ceiling – not good! Keep your home, fireplace, and brickwork looking clean and strong by stopping moisture issues in their tracks. It’s a step you won’t regret!

These issues, plus rot, decay, clogs, mold accumulation, and more are all problems you will have to face if you don’t take care of water problems right away. Don’t hesitate any longer – contact our staff now!


Once any necessary repairs are completed, ask us about our waterproofing services! Waterproofing is a great step to take and it will make a huge difference in preventing further issues from occurring down the line. Our products provide tough protection, while allowing your chimney the opportunity to properly breathe and vent out vapors. Learn more by visiting our website!

For more information, give us a call – we can’t wait to hear from you!

By Jake Johnson on April 6th, 2017 | Tagged with: Tags: , , | Leave a Comment

Schedule Your Chimney Repairs Soon

Is chimney maintenance on your spring cleaning to-do list? If not, be sure to add it now! There are countless benefits to scheduling your chimney inspections and repairs early in the season. In addition, you will be happy to have everything done once winter rolls around again.

Learn more about why now is the time to call, then browse our website for an extensive look into the many services we can offer you. At Mountain Man Fireplace & Chimney, customer satisfaction is our top priority!

Ensure Your Repairs Last

Nothing is more frustrating than paying for a repair service, only to have things break down again a short time later. By calling in repairs during the warmer weather months, you help ensure your repairs stand the test of time. You see, when it comes to chimney care, temperatures need to be within a certain range for most of the repair materials to properly cure. Once it gets cold, repairs become a challenge. Consequently, the likelihood of them lasting minimizes dramatically.

Lucky for you, the staff at Mountain Man Fireplace & Chimney is CSIA trained and certified in a wide range of repair services! We can repair dampers, replace chase covers, install chimney caps, address leaks, patch up masonry, and lots more. Call us now to schedule your chimney maintenance, and we will be happy to get you in the books!

Making Things Convenient

We always strive to make every experience as convenient as possible for the customers we work with. This is another reason why calling sooner, rather than later, helps us make your chimney experience as top-notch as possible! Once fall and winter get here, our books fill up fast. Homeowners all throughout the area want to ensure their chimney is inspected and cleaned before the holidays arrive, so we stay super busy!

Unfortunately, this makes scheduling chimney repairs a bit of a struggle. Repairs can take up some time and, if things don’t go as planned, scheduling extra days and time slots can be quite challenging! By getting things patched up ahead of time, you guarantee your fireplace will be ready to go when the cold weather arrives.

On top of all that, calling now means getting the timeslot that works best for your schedule! If you know a certain time of day is ideal, we want to work with you during that time. Get your name in right away, so you never have to worry about working around someone else’s schedule again.

Keeping Us Safe

The last thing we want to note is how much we appreciate our customers. When you schedule your repairs during nice weather, it helps keep our staff safer up on your roof. It is much more ideal to work in the sunshine, rather than battle an icy roof in windy weather. Book your repairs now, so that we can do the best job possible!

Ready to get things fixed up? Call us today!

By Jake Johnson on March 23rd, 2017 | Tagged with: Tags: , , | Leave a Comment

Start Prepping Your Firewood For Fall

Do you own a wood-burning fireplace? Guarantee yourself the best fuel around by seasoning your own wood! This process may seem a bit daunting at first, but, when executed correctly, you can easily have a large pile of ready-to-use fuel this upcoming fall and winter, at no extra charge to you. That’s a deal you can’t beat!

If you are ready to start storing wood, the time to start is now. Wood can take anywhere from 6 months to a couple years to fully season (depending on the type), so the earlier you get things going, the better! Also, you never want to use wood that is unseasoned in your fireplace. This forces your fire to burn through a lot of extra moisture, taking up energy and causing creosote to accumulate more rapidly.

Follow these guidelines to get the best fuel possible!

Proper Stacking

When you are picking a spot for your wood pile, find an open area that gets a lot of sun. You will also want to keep the pile off the ground, so be sure there is a stable platform to get things started on. When you leave the pieces in the dirt, you invite mold and rot, both of which will greatly hinder the integrity of your firewood.

Once you start piling up pieces, be sure you stack loosely. If you line your pieces together too tightly, they will not get the opportunity to properly dry out. Each log needs as much access to the sunshine and warm winds as possible! Both of these play a big role in getting rid of all that excess moisture.

Other Tips

While proper stacking is the most vital step in properly seasoning your wood, there are other steps you can take to help the process go smoothly. Check them out!

  • Cover the pile to keep rain off. You can place a tarp over your wood to help fend off bad weather, but leave the sides open. While protecting against rain and harsh winds is a good idea, you don’t want to cut off too much ventilation.
  • Cut your pieces to different sizes. Different sizes are more ideal as starting and maintaining fires requires all different shapes and lengths of wood. For example, smaller pieces are used when first getting a flame going, while bigger pieces are placed on afterwards.
  • Measure your firebox. There would be nothing more frustrating than seasoning a bunch of wood, only to find out it is all too big for your fireplace. Do some measuring beforehand to save yourself the extra stress and hassle.

How Do I Know It’s Ready?

Well-seasoned wood all follows a certain set of guidelines. If you are looking for seasoned wood, note these characteristics:

  • Light-weight
  • Shorter length
  • Split/dark ends
  • Hollow sound when hit together
  • Easy to light

At Mountain Man Fireplace & Chimney, we can help you prepare your fireplace for any season! Give us a call today to set up your next inspection or cleaning, or browse our website to view our long list of repair services. We can make your fireplace great!

By Jake Johnson on March 9th, 2017 | Tagged with: Tags: , , | Leave a Comment

Signs Of A Chimney Fire

When it comes to chimney fires, you may assume you would know if you had one. Fires tend to be loud, hot, and bright, so, should one occur, it would be obvious, right? Not necessarily!

Many fireplace owners discover a chimney fire has happened well after the fact, with no knowledge of it ever occurring. Chimney fires are terrible for the health of your chimney and can lead to extensive damage down the line. They greatly weaken the structure of your entire fireplace and call for immediate action, as far as repairs. A certified sweep can let you know the best steps to take for moving forward and getting your fireplace back to where it needs to be.

If you are worried that you have had a chimney fire, but aren’t sure what signs to look for, check out these clues that may indicate a fire has occurred.

Deformed/Excess Creosote

Generally speaking, creosote is not good for the health of your chimney and, the more of it there is, the higher your risk is for a chimney fire. This substance is highly flammable, which is why having a professional clean it out on a regular basis is so important.

Inspecting the creosote in your chimney can help you decipher whether or not a chimney fire has occurred. If the creosote is puffy-looking or if you notice flakes and other pieces of it scattered throughout your roof or around your hearth, then you should call in an expert right away to take a closer look.

Heat Damage

Too high temperatures in your fireplace can lead to lasting damage down the line. Check your TV antenna, the metal pieces of your chimney, and your roofing materials for potential heat damage. If anything is warped, distorted, or discolored, then you have likely had a chimney fire.

Cracks And Holes

If a chimney fire has occurred, you may notice cracks, holes, or missing pieces throughout your chimney. The brickwork, tiles, mortar, and more will show obvious signs of deterioration that will only worsen if not properly addressed. These cracks will also allow smoke to escape through various parts of the bricks and liner, causing countless ventilation issues.

By getting these problems addressed fast, you save yourself time, money, and loads of stress. Call in an expert as soon as possible, so your fireplace is ready for use all year long.

Give Us A Call!

All in all, having a professional come in and check things over is the best way to ensure your chimney is safe, clean, and strong. If you want to maintain good chimney health for years to come, schedule an inspection today! The staff at Mountain Man Fireplace and Chimney is ready to set you up right so that you can enjoy your fireplace to the fullest anytime you’d like.

Call on our CSIA certified experts now!

By Jake Johnson on February 23rd, 2017 | Tagged with: Tags: , , , | Leave a Comment

Why Is A Chimney Damper Important?

Your chimney damper is a simple device that plays a huge role in helping your fireplace run smoothly. It works like a flap that can be opened and closed as needed, and it makes building and maintaining fires a much simpler process. Check out some of the benefits you gain when you have a well-built, proper working damper in your chimney.

Keeps Cold Air Out

A fireplace is great for heating a room, but what about when it is not in use? The chimney provides a smooth path for chilly weather to enter the home, and the last thing anyone wants is a cold draft in their family room. This not only makes for an unpleasant living area, but contributes to high heating and energy bills, as well!

This is where chimney dampers come into play. When your fireplace is not in use, dampers plug up the chimney so no heat escapes through it and no cold air can enter. A good-fitting and clean damper will work effectively to keep winter winds outside of your home where they belong!

Sends Smoke Away

When you decide to light up a fire, you need to make sure all the smoke and other toxins go up and out the chimney, keeping your home and family comfortable and safer. To do this, you simply open the damper and you are good to go! This is another great thing about these devices… While they work hard to keep your home free from cold winds and nasty weather, they can be easily opened to ensure smoke effectively escapes when necessary.

Helps Control Your Fire

Once your fire gets going, a damper is a great tool to utilize when you want to control the intensity of the flame. You can open and close it as needed, so that your fire only receives as much oxygen as you want it to receive. The more oxygen a fire gets, the stronger it will burn… give it less and it will die down a bit. This is why a well-working damper is such a great tool for keeping your fires exactly where you want them to be.

Ventilation Issues?

Are you having some issues with smoke back-up or air flow? No problem! The staff at Mountain Man Fireplace and Chimney can help you out. Your damper may be clogged with nasty debris and creosote or maybe it is damaged. No matter the issue, we can inspect your fireplace and resolve any malfunctions.

If you are in need of a new damper, we can do that, too! We can figure out exactly what type of damper you need for your specific type of chimney. Ensuring that it is a strong material and proper fit will make all the difference when it comes to keeping smoke and cold air out.

For more information or to schedule an appointment, call us today. We look forward to doing business with you!

By Jake Johnson on February 7th, 2017 | Tagged with: Tags: , , | Leave a Comment

Start Working On Next Year’s Firewood

When it comes to firewood, it is important to plan ahead. Did you know most types of wood take at least 6 months to season? And many take one to two years! If you hope to burn lots of fires in 2018, you need to start prepping wood now.

Importance Of Seasoned Wood

By seasoning your own wood, you are doing yourself and your fireplace a great service! Burning unseasoned fuel results in smoke accumulation, creosote build-up, acidic toxins in the air, and more. By sticking with your own properly dried fuel, your fires will be easier to build and they will burn cleaner and more efficiently. Keep your chimney in good health by burning only seasoned wood from here on out.

If you are ready to start storing and seasoning your own fuel, then we have some great tips to help you get started. Check them out!

Cut It Short

When cutting your wood, the shorter you go the better off you will be. The smaller it is, the quicker it will dry out. You will also want to make it an appropriate length for your fireplace or stove. There’s no use in storing your own firewood, if it will not fit in your appliance! Do some measuring, then cut the logs to at least three inches shorter than the width or depth of your fireplace (depending on how you build your fires).

Be Careful When Covering

You may need to cover your wood to keep it safe during bad weather. Yet, covering it up all the time means less sun exposure and longer drying times. When the weather is good, uncover your wood so more heat can get in and dry out the moisture. Also, never cover up the sides. Just cover the top to keep rain out.

Stack Off The Ground

Leaving wood on the ground leads to mold accumulation and rot. Instead, store the wood on pallets or poles to keep it off the ground throughout the seasoning process. Also, stack the pieces lightly. The more air circulation each piece has, the better the whole pile will vent. A well-vented storage area is ideal for effective seasoning.

Look Into Wood Types

You may also want to keep in mind that certain types of wood burn more efficiently than others. Try for ash, hickory, oak, pine, and similar hardwoods that are known for producing high heat and longer-lasting burns.

Remember, too, that certain trees are more common in different areas. Find which types of wood you have the most access to, so you never have to worry about running short.

At Mountain Man Fireplace and Chimney, we want to help you enjoy your fireplace for years to come! Invest in our services for any and all of your chimney-related needs. We look forward to helping you out!

By Jake Johnson on January 19th, 2017 | Tagged with: Tags: , , | Leave a Comment

Practice Fireplace Safety This Winter

Brr! Temperatures have dropped and snow is all around, meaning the winter season has officially arrived. If you spend your days out and about in the cold weather, then you deserve a warm, cozy spot to come home to. Does relaxing in front of a fireplace sound like the best way to spend your evening? We think so, too! Yet, it’s important to make sure your appliance is safe for regular use, before lighting anything up.

Take note of these fireplace safety tips and be sure to educate your family, as well. Staying up-to-date on proper procedures and regulations will help ensure your home is kept as safe as possible this winter.

Schedule An Inspection

First and foremost, have your chimney inspected and swept before doing anything else. Having a certified expert take a look will ensure that no cracks, holes, or other deterioration will make your chimney unsuitable for regular use. Any defect, small or large, could trigger big problems down the line. It is recommended to schedule an inspection once a year. If you use your fireplace often, then consider upping that to two or three.

Check Your Smoke Detectors

Do you have smoke and carbon monoxide detectors throughout your home? If not, be sure to purchase them and have them installed as soon as possible! These devices have made the difference for countless families and play a vital role in alerting everyone of potential dangers. Should a fire occur, getting everyone out safely is the most important thing – install your detectors today.

Once installed, check these devices at least once a month, and change the batteries twice a year. The regular lifespan of a smoke detector is 10 years, so double check the expiration date on yours if it has been awhile.

Maintaining Safe Fires

Once your home is ready, you can start lighting up your fires. Yet, there are things to keep in mind throughout this process, as well. Keep the area around the fire clear of anything flammable, such as blankets, pillows, holiday décor, clothing, and more. You will also want to keep any children or small pets away from the flame. Set rules right away, so the little ones know the fire is completely off limits.

When you go to light your fire, only use seasoned wood to keep it fueled. Throwing paper plates, leftover food, wrapping paper, and other garbage into the fireplace will send harmful toxins into your air. Once you have a fire lit, never leave it unattended. Monitor the flame at all times and do not go to bed unless everything is completely out.

Call On Us!

For any fireplace-related question or service, depend on the professionals at Mountain Man Fireplace and Chimney! We can help you out today.

By Jake Johnson on January 5th, 2017 | Tagged with: Tags: , , | Leave a Comment

How To Build An Efficient Fire

Constructing an Effective Fire Image - Littleton CO - Mountain Man Fireplace & ChimneyWhen cold, winter winds strike, most hope to find themselves inside, cozied up by a warm fireplace. Yet, this idyllic image can only be made a reality if you know how to build a top-notch fire. Study up on these tips so that you can build great fires, not just at Christmas time, but all year round.

Prep The Fireplace

Your fireplace needs to be swept at least once per year in order for you to build safe and effective fires. If it has been out of use for a while, you should have a professional stop in to check things over. A certified sweep will keep an eye out for leaves and other outdoor debris that could cause blockages. Any creosote, animal nesting, and other similar material puts your home and family at an increased risk for house fires, smoke back-up, and carbon monoxide poisoning.

You will also want to make sure the damper is open and the flue is warmed up, so the smoke can efficiently escape. Failure to do either of these could leave you will a very cloudy living room.

Picking The Best Fuel

You will also need to ensure that you have picked out the best wood logs you can find. Did you know that every piece of firewood contains some amount of water? It may seem strange, but it takes a lot time for fresh-cut wood to dry out! The goal is to find the pieces with the least amount of water possible. Once they reach a certain moisture level, they are deemed “seasoned” and can be used for your fires.

There are some things you can look out for when searching for seasoned fuel. It will likely be dark and split at the ends. This indicates that it has been drying out for a longer period of time. This wood will also be lighter weight and will make a clearer thunk-ing noise when smacked together.

Build Your Fire

There are countless techniques for building fires, but one in particular seems to be growing in popularity. The following steps will guide you on how to build a top-down fire. These fires are longer-lasting, and you rarely have to tend to them. On top of this, they do not collapse on themselves, thus smothering flames and causing ash and embers to fly up and out. Try this method out today!

  • Stack your largest logs on the floor of your fireplace. Continuing stacking your firewood so that the logs get smaller and smaller the higher up it goes. Do this until the logs are about half way up your fireplace’s opening.
  • Place your kindling on top of this stack. Kindling consists of small twigs and branches.
  • Place tinder on top of the kindling. You could use newspaper, grass, or anything similar that will easily ignite until your kindling really gets going.
  • Enjoy! Once your fire gets going, it will simply work its way down the wood pile, while you sit back and relax.

Contact Mountain Man Fireplace and Chimney for help with any of your fireplace-related needs. We look forward to working with you today!

By Jake Johnson on December 21st, 2016 | Tagged with: Tags: , , , | Leave a Comment