Are Chimney Balloons Effective?
Chimney balloons are popular for a number of reasons. First of all they are very affordable. Chimney balloon manufacturers also claim that their products can stop cold drafts from coming through your fireplace, stop heat from leaving, prevent odors, and help reduce outside noise. This article will look at these claims so you can figure out if a balloon is the best solution for your chimney problem. There are a few alternatives to balloons that you should also consider.
Balloons Are Effective But Not Permanent Solutions
The best things about balloons is that they are cheap and easy to use. You can install your balloon yourself if you follow the basic instructions. Of course, different brands have different installation methods, but they are usually similar and quite simple. Once properly installed, an inflated balloon in your chimney flue will effectively block air. You should no longer feel cold drafts when you walk by your fireplace on a cold winter day.
The balloon basically does the job of a damper. Repairing a damper is often a very difficult process that requires a lot of collateral damage and reconstruction of your chimney and surrounding walls. As a result, it is often too expensive for many homeowners. A cheap balloon can be a perfect, if temporary, solution while you wait for your damper to get repaired.
When Doesn't A Balloon Work?
In many instances a balloon will not be effective. Most often, if there is water leaking though your flue and into your fireplace, you will not be able to fix the problem with a balloon. A balloon will only work temporarily if the leak in your flue is above your balloon. However, the water might pool up above the balloon, damaging it until it eventually breaks and the water splashes into your fireplace.
If there is a water leak in your flue, you need to have it professionally repaired. A water leak within a flue is obviously difficult to fix because it is hard to see and access. Professionals will use special cameras and a sealing solution to repair the chimney. This is specialized work that might be costly, but the cost will rise if you wait too long and the water damage within your chimney becomes severe.
Balloons are great solutions for most small problems within your chimney flue. It might even be a great way to stave off further, more costly repairs. For more information or to schedule a chimney inspection, contact a local professional.