Woodstoves and Fireplaces Should be Inspected Annually
The Groveland Fire Department recommends having your woodstove/fireplace and flue inspected by a certified chimney sweep professional at least once a year. This reduces the chance of a flue fire and assures that the woodstove, piping, flue cap, and screen are all in good working order and bricks and mortar are in good repair. To prevent flue fires homeowners should burn small, hot fires using seasoned firewood with a good draft and plenty of airflow.
If a flue fire starts call 9-1-1 so the fire department can quickly respond to put out the fire and check for any extensions of the fire in the attic or on the roof. Make sure to get everyone out of the house and keep all a safe distance away. Once the fire is completely out call a professional to inspect, clean, and service the flue and assess the damage before using the woodstove/fireplace again.
TIP: Throw a glass of water directly on the fire, it will flash into steam, rise up in the flue, inhibit oxygen, and snuff out the fire. In addition, turn down the air damper on the front of the stove and close the woodstove/fireplace doors. This will help keep the fire in the flue and in most cases put the fire out.