Never Had a Fireplace Before - Need Advice
We've put in an offer on a home in the Carolinas that has a fireplace in the lower level of the house, which is, I guess the playroom.
Always lived in FL, rare to see fireplaces down here and have absolutely NO experience with having one at all.
Whether it be this house or another, I'm probably going to be faced with the same questions and trying to learn more about the proper care and use of a fireplace and chimney.
The house that we have the offer on, it's for sure the fireplace has been neglected. I thought that a chimney sweep would be one of the first 10 people I call to come out, figuring it must be a messy job and want to get that taken care of before I do the first cleaning in the house (it's filthy!!!!!)
What is an average cost of a chimney sweep? Is there anything in particular I should know to ask the CS person? What do you need to have on hand for to light a fireplace - I know about the screens, but what else is there? Does a chimney bring in cold air from outside or is it completely closed off when not in use? What keeps animals from coming down the chute? There some soot? on the front of the chimney, what's the best way to clean it off?
If there are any sites you could recommend that may be beneficial, I'd appreciate it. I don't know how much use of the fireplace we'll get down there, it's just the two of us and we probably won't frequent down there that much.
Thanks for all the help and advice in advance!!!