Get your chimney checked before the next cold spell

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While last month’s winter storm may have taken Pampa residents by surprise last month and led to an increase use of residents’ chimneys.

Jimmy Baggett, formerly of Jimmy Baggett Handyman, has been cleaning and inspecting chimneys for residents for the last several years.

One of the common issues Baggett sees with chimneys in our area is rain, snow or precipitation leaking into the top of the chimneys.

“Water will leak down at the top of the chimney where the mortar has gone bad and into the cracks and bricks breaking it apart,” Baggett said. “Leaves and other debris will get in there and I even had a customer whose house would’ve burned down had it caught fire.”

There are many variables that play into how often a resident should clean their chimney such as frequency of use and type of wood being burned in the chimney.

“Burn good, hard and dry wood,” Baggett said. “A lot of people use pinion wood but it causes a lot of build-up at the top. The hard dried wood like oak or cedar burn a little cleaner.”

Baggett has cleaned and looked at 25 to 30 chimneys this year and recommends residents get a cap to put at the top of the chimney when not in use.

“That (the cap) will help keep leaves, sticks and other debris out of the chimney,” Baggett said. “They come in a variety of sizes but they are pretty easy to install.”

The process of cleaning and inspecting the chimney is pretty simple.

“I’ll look at everything and check for cracks and broken brick or mortar,” Baggett said. “Then I’ll take a brush and clean it, of course.”

Baggett charges $125 for a single-story house and $150 for a two-story house. While it’s common for residents to ask for him to look just before winter, he is open to checking chimneys anytime of year.

For more information or to have Baggett clean your chimney, call 806-595-0789.

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