We’ve seen one robin already. No lie. Before you know it, the corn will be “as high as an elephant’s eye” and we’ll be singing “Oh, What a Beautiful Mornin’. ”

How do you care for your chimney after the winter’s snow and cold and ice and rain?

Sure, your fireplace and chimney are still getting a good workout, but it’s not too early to think about the days when fans will be spinning or AC humming. Since we at Northeastern Masonry & Chimney know what is needed to open or close or maintain a fireplace and chimney, permit us to share our hard-earned wisdom.

Post-winter, there are some things you can do yourself, and other things best left to professionals like Northeastern Masonry & Chimney.

First of all and most obviously: shut down the fire, let the embers cool, and don’t start any more new fires. Once you are done for the season, stick to your decision.

What next?

You can do some of the required cleanup work yourself. Once those embers have become stone-cold and safely disposed of, you can remove soot or ash from the bottom of the fireplace by using an industrial vacuum cleaner. As for the chimney, have a certified chimney sweep properly remove soot and creosote that has built up over the winter and its many hours of fire burning. By the time spring weather arrives, it is time to remove deposits in the chimney. You don’t want them to emit unpleasant odors.

Be sure to close your damper. When your fireplace goes unused for any significant duration, close the damper. Doing so prevents air and odors from entering or exiting the house.

What else? If you have a gas fireplace, turn off the pilot light when you are done for the season. This will save on energy use and cost. If you’re unsure or skittish about how to do this, we’ll be glad to do it for you.

The spring and summer are also ideal times to fix any loose or crumbling brickwork and masonry. This ensures April showers and summer rains don’t leak into your chimney or fireplace, causing further damage,

These simple and sensible post-winter steps will protect your home and make things that much easier in the next burning season.

How do you take care of your fireplace and chimney in the “off-season”?

We’re always glad to hear from our many loyal customers, who, incidentally, are very informed and experienced. Let us know.

Northeastern Masonry & Chimney employs CSIA-certified professionals. If you need help in closing down your chimney after the winter, or merely have a question or concern, call us at 518-767-9315.

As certified professionals, we adhere to strict standards and practices. Plus, we apply the benefits of successful encounters with thousands of customers over the course of decades.

We are proud of our 35 years of experience in the Capital District, Central and Northern New York, the Hudson Valley and western Massachusetts.

Even though the idea of knee-high corn — never mind as high as an elephant’s eye! — is but a dream, bookmark this page for handy reference.