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odd smell from wood burning fireplace(s)

Posted by sweet_home (My Page) on
Tue, May 11, 10 at 1:30

We have 2 wood buring fireplaces in our 37 yr old house. One is in the living room and the other one is in the family room. There seems to be an odd smell coming from both the fireplaces. We don't use both of them but looks like some of the owners who lived here a while back used it extensively. We did a chimney sweep of both chimneys last year and put tight sealing chimney top dampers(to prevent air drafts). We do notice an odd smell coming from both fireplaces and it fills up the entire room. Even though the smell from the family room fireplace is not exactly the same as that of the living room, it is obvious that they are coming from the fireplace. We don't have tight sealing front covers for both fireplaces. The question is would tight sealing covers stop the odor? My husband thinks it wouldn't. I don't understand what is causing the odor to begin with. I can smell the odor in the kitchen if I switch on the exhaust fan. Agreed I am more sensitive to smell when compared to others but this odor is very noticeable. Is there anything I can do to get rid of the odor? What can cause it? Any feedback would be appreciated.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: odd smell from wood burning fireplace(s)

Well sealed doors will almost certainly stop the smell. Perhaps more important is what causes the smell. If damp wood has been burned previously this can cause deposits in the chimney as it doesn't get a chance to warm up thus the humidity in the wood condenses in the flue. This can also lead to deposits of creosote, this has a 'distinctive' odor and can be potentially dangerous as it is highly flammable and often a cause of chimney fires. Maybe best to get it checked out by a professional?

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