Our Company Blog

The Value of Glass Doors on your Fireplace

Open hearth fireplaces add a warmth and ambiance to any room in the home. Over time, however, homeowners may want to upgrade the look of their fireplace without investing in a major remodel.

One of the easiest ways to change the look of your open hearth fireplace without cleaning out your savings account is by installing new glass doors on your fireplace. Below are just a few of benefits to installing glass doors, such as an upgraded look, improved safety, and greater efficiency.

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1. Increased efficiency

Although open hearth fireplaces are beautiful, they are also incredibly inefficient. Most open hearth fireplaces operate with as little as 10% efficiency, meaning the vast majority of the heat created is lost up the chimney. Glass doors, however, better absorb and radiate heat in to the room. Likewise, by enclosing the firebox the firewood can be more completely burned, saving you money on wood.

2. Lower heating and cooling costs

While dampers are able to partially seal off the chimney from the rest of your house, they are not able to prevent all the heated or cooled air from escaping. Because of this, your HVAC system may have to work overtime to compensate for the conditioned air lost or the unconditioned air entering your home.

Adding glass doors can prevent this energy loss by creating another layer of protection between your home and the outside air. This often results in lower energy costs, especially when using the now more efficient fireplace as a supplementary heating source in the winter.

3. Reduce downdrafts

Dampers can protect your home against downdrafts – when they are closed. When the fireplace is in use – especially during windy conditions – you may experience smoke blowing back into the home because of downdrafts. Keeping fireplace doors closed will prevent smoke, soot, ash, or embers from blowing into your home because of downdrafts.

4. Modern style

If your masonry fireplace looks dated, remodeling it might seem like a daunting process. In addition to the hassle of living in a construction zone for weeks – or longer – remodels can be expensive and may include hidden expenses. Rather than dealing with the annoyance of a complete remodel, consider adding glass doors as a way to easily and cost effectively upgrade your fireplace’s style. Glass doors are available in a wide variety of styles from the traditional to the contemporary, as well as at a variety of price points to fit any budget.

5. Safety

Open hearth fireplaces are beautiful but can pose a safety hazard, especially when there are young children or pets in the home. Adding glass fireplace doors can act as a baby gate barrier between the fire and any curious hands or paws.

In addition to protecting your family members, fireplace doors can also protect your home. When the doors are closed, sparks and embers are contained in the firebox and are not able to blow into the room or onto any carpets or furnishings.

With so many benefits to glass fireplace doors, consider adding them to your open hearth fireplace. Contact Pristine Sweeps today to find the perfect glass doors for your fireplace!

Make Sure to Have Your Dryer Vents Cleaned!

There are a number of ways fireplace owners protect their families from accidental house fires, from installing smoke alarms to having their fireplaces regularly swept and maintained. However, all homeowners – not just those who have fireplaces – should have their dryer vents regularly cleaned to prevent house fires.

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Clogged dryer vents cause fires

As our dryers dry our clothes, small amounts of fabric are shed. These fabric fibers are what create the lint that is found in the lint trap after each load. However, over time lint can also accumulate in the dryer ductwork and vents. If too much lint accumulates it can constrict the dryer’s airflow, causing the dryer to create hotter and hotter air to dry the clothes. This progressively hotter air can ignite the highly flammable lint, starting a dryer fire that may quickly spread throughout your home.

The US Consumer Product Safety Commission estimates that there are thousands of house fires caused by dryers each year. These fires cause more than $200 million in damages along with numerous injuries and deaths. Fortunately, the risk of dryer fire can be greatly reduced with proper dryer vent maintenance.

Signs your dryer vents need to be cleaned

Many homeowners may not recognize the signs their dryers need to be cleaned. Luckily, there are a number of signs that may indicate it is time to get your dryer vents cleaned. Likewise, even if you are not experiencing any of these symptoms it is still recommended to have dryer vents cleaned at least once per year.

  • A single load of clothes takes more than a full cycle to dry
  • The drying time needed for a single load exceeds 45 minutes
  • The laundry room becomes significantly warmer when the dryer is in use
  • The lint trap is full or has larger than normal amounts of lint after a single load
  • The dryer or the clothes themselves have a noticeably musty odor
  • There is an excessive buildup of lint or debris around exterior vents

If you’ve noticed a decrease in your dryer’s performance, consider having the dryer vents cleaned before purchasing a new appliance. If the dryer vents are clogged, purchasing a new appliance will not solve the issue! Instead, have your dryer vents cleaned first and potentially save yourself hundreds of dollars.

Ways to prevent dryer fires

In additionally to having your dryer vents professionally cleaned at least once a year, there are a number of things that homeowners can do to reduce their risk for dryer fire.

  • Clean the lint trap after every dryer load
  • Keep the area around the dryer clean and clear. Avoid stacking laundry next to or on top of the dryer, and regularly clean behind the dryer
  • Consider replacing plastic or foil accordion-style ducts with rigid or semi-rigid varieties
  • Call a dryer vent cleaning service as soon as you notice any signs of clogged ducts

At Pristine Sweeps, we can do more than just take care of your fireplace and chimney needs. If you need to schedule a dryer vent cleaning, contact us today to help keep you and your family safe!