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Have Your Cap Checked/Installed Before Chimney Swifts Get Cozy

Have you ever noticed a little brown bird flying in and out of your chimney in the spring? If you have, chances are that you had a chimney swift building a nest in your chimney. Chimney swifts usually build their nests in hollowed out trees in forests. Like many animals, however,  they have adapted to urbanization by nesting inside chimneys which closely mimic their natural nesting habitat. At Old Smokey’s we know that chimney swifts can be a nuisance, but there are some important things you must consider when dealing with them.

Nesting Issues

Although they may seem harmless and usually don’t occupy your chimney during the time of year when you are using your fireplace, chimney swift nests can cause all sorts of issues with ventilation and can even be a fire hazard when, in the fall, the nest drys up and fall into your flue. Even worse, if you have a metal or clay flue, chimney swifts may sometimes lose their grip and fall and get trapped in your flue killing the bird and clogging your chimney flue as well.

Nest Removal

So, how do you get rid of chimney swift nests? Chimney swift nests can be removed, however, you must take extreme caution to do so at the right time of the year. This is because chimney swifts are protected by the Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918 making it illegal to remove their nest when it is still being occupied. Removing a nest can bring fines and other penalties enforced by the federal government. Therefore, the best method for removing a chimney swift nest from your chimney is to have a Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) certified chimney technician remove the nest for you. First, a CSIA-certified chimney technician has all the correct safety equipment to handle a nest removal on top of your roof. Secondly, a CSIA-certified technician will be able to tell if the nest is still being occupied giving you peace of mind that you aren’t doing anything illegal.

Nesting Prevention

The best way to prevent a chimney swift from building a nest in your chimney is to block access to your chimney opening. This can be done by making sure you have a functioning chimney cap installed. A chimney cap prevents chimney swifts, and other animals, from entering your chimney and, therefore, prevents them from building a nest in there. Besides animals, chimney caps also prevent other things such as sticks, leaves, and moisture from entering your chimney, So, even if you aren’t worried about chimney swifts, it’s still an excellent idea to have a functional chimney cap.

Prevent chimney swifts from entering your chimney before it’s too late! Now is the time to have your chimney cap inspected and while you’re at it, you may as well have your annual chimney inspection as well. Don’t hesitate, call Old Smokey’s at 260-424-0009 or schedule an appointment online today!

Chimney Caps Keep Wildlife Out

You know how a sign that says “WET PAINT” often has the opposite of the intended effect? After you see the sign, you want to touch the wet paint. You almost can’t help yourself. It’s human nature. We wonder if a sign at the top of your chimney that said “ANIMALS: KEEP OUT” would do the same type of thing. Would mice, squirrels, raccoons, bats, birds, and other critters stay away? Or try harder to get in your chimney? Is it animal nature?

It’s not just mice, squirrels, and raccoons to worry about.

One unwanted visitor that presents a special challenge is the chimney swift. Chimney swifts are challenging because they enjoy special protections by law and regulation. Old Smokey’s Fireplace & Chimney can help you deal with chimney swifts that might try to use your chimney as a nesting site.

Chimney swifts are protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act. Professional chimney sweeps understand this and how to deal with chimney swifts. Our sweeps are professionally trained, and they know the correct protocols and practices regarding swifts.

A careful inspection by a qualified professional is a common-sense approach to critter control. Instead of relying on guesswork or possibly erroneous conclusions, rely on Old Smokey’s pros to discern your chimney’s situation.

Have Old Smokey’s Fireplace & Chimney inspect and sweep your chimney.

With or without the possibility of small-animal intrusions, the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) recommends an annual chimney inspection and cleaning. As we inspect your chimney, we will look for evidence of critters.

The most common way to keep animals out of your chimney is the proper installation of a chimney cap. An efficient chimney cap can be made of stainless steel, galvanized black steel, copper, or aluminum. A chimney cap can be square, rectangular, oval, or round. Whatever the material or the shape, a chimney cap can be a valuable resource in keeping out animals.

When you get a new chimney cap, consider both form and function. Old Smokey’s can help you make the right choice, and we can make sure it is properly installed. A chimney cap needs to be mounted securely and evenly so it can guard your chimney from animal intrusions. In other words, you’ll want a qualified and experienced Old Smokey’s professional to install your chimney cap.

Count on us!

Our 30+ years of experience testifies to the trust Old Smokey’s has built throughout northeast Indiana, northwest Ohio, and mid-south Michigan. We are proud of the thousands of satisfied customers who have benefited from our professionalism over the years.

Call 260-424-0009 or 800-876-6539, or schedule an appointment online. We’ll be happy to share our wealth of experience with respect to uninvited nonhuman visitors, whether they have wings or paws or fur or feathers, in your home’s chimney system. Better yet, Old Smokey’s has some solutions in mind. Let’s cap off this discussion by leaving one thought in your mind: chimney cap. Do you need one?

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