As much as thirty percent of the energy you use to heat or cool your house escapes by way of your fireplace. This isn't the heat that is lost because you're burning a fire in the hearth, it's the energy you are making use of for your principal source of heat when there is no fire in the hearth and the damper is closed. If you would prefer to plug that energy loss, get a hold of a fireplace plug.
A fireplace plug is an inflatable pillow that tightly seals the chimney of your fireplace so that there is no heat loss through it. Even though the pillow looks much like an inflatable bath pillow, it is manufactured from a fabric that is resistant to the acids that are a component of wood soot, so that it's going to last for a long time.
To use the plug, your hearth needs to be cold and the opening clear of any sharp objects which could tear the cushion. You should use a scraper or brush to get rid of any soot or creosote in the area leading up to the damper. Inflate the pillow and raise it into the opening of the flue. The handle adjusts to keep the pillow in place.
You have now started to save thirty percent off the cost of cooling or heating your home.
When you would like to burn a fire, you merely take away the fireplace plug and open the damper. After the flames have been extinguished and the fireplace is cool once more, shut the damper and insert the fireplace plug back into the opening. With your fireplace screen or doors closed, the handle that holds the plug in position is barely apparent.
The amount of cash you save on just a single month's cooling or heating costs can essentially pay for the price of the fireplace plug. As well as saving money, though, you will also find that this device makes your home more comfortable. Even when the damper is closed on the hearth and the windows are closed in the home, the natural chimney effect draws warm air out of the house and cold air in by way of the cracks in the windows. This makes your home drafty and there's cool air leaking in that can give you a chill.
When you seal the windows adequately, the chimney effect produces a vacuum in your house that eventually reaches the point where it needs to be filled. If a door hasn't been opened, the vacuum is filled by a down draft via the flue. This practice continues night and day right throughout the winter.
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