When you're sitting in front a fire the last thing on your mind is the condition of your chimney.
But if you don't give it some thought before you light those winter fires, your enjoyment may be very short-lived.
An annual chimney cleaning is something many of us don't think of, and it could cost you your home.
"We go to several every year that are from a chimney fire. If you don't it could burn your house down," says chimney sweep Casey Lowe.
Thomas Longston knows all to well.
After starting a fire in the fireplace Sunday, his attic caught on fire because birds had nested in his chimney.
Longston says, “the fire alarm went off and the first thing I decided to do was go outside and take a look, I look up and the chimney was on fire. I was like man I’m in trouble, this is not good.""
Something chimney sweep casey Lowe sees all to often.
"We've seen birds nests, birds, squirrels, even raccoons will get in there,” says Lowe.
He says there are a few things to look out for that hint to a clogged chimney.
"Sparks coming out of the fireplace, animals around it."
But he says most important is that annual cleaning.
"This is the last time i'll make this mistake. It's a horrible mistake, imagine the whole house burning down. I'm very lucky nothing inside was damaged, besides the water damage,” says Longston
Viewers with disabilities can get assistance accessing this station's FCC Public Inspection File by contacting the station with the information listed below. Questions or concerns relating to the accessibility of the FCC's online public file system should be directed to the FCC at 888-225-5322, 888-835-5322 (TTY), or firstname.lastname@example.org.