This winter season if updates to this blog stop for an extended period you may plausibly attribute it to this cause: I have burned the house down. I really look forward to cold weather because I love building fires — stoking, proding, accelerating them. I had my cord of wood delivered in September when it was still 80 out. But, man, I screw up one out of every five fires. Usually I know why: too windy out, didn’t heat the flue up enough, ember torched the rug — that sort of thing. But there’s that one instance out of, say, ten when I can’t explain why the house is filling with smoke. Like tonight, when I had to scurry around ripping the smoke detectors from the ceiling. I did everything right. Might it have something to do with the fact that there are two fireplaces — one right below the other — that feed into the same chimney? Some sort of backdraft coming in through the other fireplace? Or something with starting a fire with a not-completely-burnt log from a prior fire? Perhaps the arsonist is just an idiot. Is that it?

3 Responses to “Firestarter”

  1. Killworth says :

    You need a top seal damper. We had the same thing, fire in the upstairs fireplace would smoke out the basement. The top seal damper is a heavy flat piece of metal that sits on top of the chimney – when not using the fireplace you crank in down so it seals the chimney off and no smoke from the other will come back down into it. Ours worked. Ask Greer – he can hook you up.

  2. Killworth says :

    Very helpful Greer, I’m sure Tolva doesn’t know how to Google…