5 Steps to Making Your Home More Allergy Friendly

Get Your Wood Burning Fireplace Ready For Winter With These Deep Cleaning Tips

Atlanta may have been basking in temperatures topping 94 degrees recently, but it’s time to prepare for winter. As soon as the cold weather creeps in, your wood burning fireplace will be the one household feature that you simply won’t be able to live without. So, it’s essential that it’s sparkling clean both inside and out to ensure it’s in full working order. A clean home is a happy home, so to keep your fireplace flames burning, utilize the services of a professional cleaning company or carry out a deep clean yourself.

Preparing for the big clean

Preparation is the key to a successful deep clean of your wood burning fireplace. Soot and ash are messy, so you must protect your home's existing features, including your carpets and sofas, with dust sheets. You'll then need to remove the soot and ash which has accumulated in your fireplace. It's best to use a fireplace shovel and a broom to do this. To avoid traipsing the dirty debris through your home, have a lined bin handy so you can instantly dump the mess.

Making your fireplace shine

Once the debris is cleared, it's time to get your hands dirty and get scrubbing. For ease, remove the log holder and andirons and clean outside using a brush and soapy water, but be sure to use an eco-friendly detergent. Then it's time to get the walls of your fire shining. A white vinegar and water mix, combined with some elbow grease and a nylon brush should shift any residue and unsightly stains. After using vinegar, apply baking powder and water to neutralize it. Vinegar can also be used to remove rust from any metal accessories you may have for your fireplace, such as a poker or shovel.

Alternative options

The National Fire Protection Association Standard 211 says, "Chimneys, fireplaces, and vents shall be inspected at least once a year for soundness, freedom from deposits, and correct clearances. Cleaning, maintenance, and repairs shall be done if necessary." But, if the thought of cleaning out your existing fireplace is too much to contemplate, consider calling in a professional cleaning service to do the job for you to ensure you meet regulations. Another option is to remove your traditional fireplace altogether and seek alternative home heating options. For those after a similar heating device, a wall mounted fireplace is a great option as they're mess free, sit neatly on the wall and require very little maintenance. Or, you could choose to install electric heaters to keep your home toasty when winter arrives.

Winter is coming!

Winter is on its way, so it's time to prepare your wood burning fireplace for the cold snap. Therefore, be sure to call in the professionals or perform a deep clean of your fireplace yourself.  Either way, always use environmentally friendly products on your fireplace to maintain maximum performance, as well as a stunning looking home feature.

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About the Author

Raina Raflo owns Sponge & Sparkle, Atlanta’s oldest and most reputable independent maid and house cleaning service. (404) 633-9652.

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