WEST SPRINGFIELD, MASS. (WWLP) – Winter weather has people turning to their fireplaces to keep warm, and wood burning fireplaces have already caused several house fires in Western Massachusetts this season.
“You want to light it up, have a lovely Christmas, or a nice fire on a cold evening,” said Cherry Hemingway of West Springfield. “You forget to clean it properly, and you have accidents”.
Fireplace experts at Fireside Designs told 22News homeowners have to remember to clean out their wood burning fireplaces annually to avoid a buildup that could clog your chimney.
“Wood burning, again creates creosote, that is very dangerous…can cause chimney fires, even to the extent of burning a house down,” said Jean Peloquin, owner of Fireside Designs.
Fireside Designs said hiring a chimney sweep will cost around a $100, but could save you money, maybe even your life down the road. The store said they recommend cleaning your fireplace each spring.
For those looking for a safer alternative to wood burning fireplaces, Fireside Designs recommends pellet burning fireplaces are easy to operate, and most people can clean them themselves.