Sir, There’s a Santa Lodged in Your Chimney

by on Nov.07, 2008, under family, home & stuff, money

In the spirit of coming to terms with home ownership, we recently had a chimney sweep come out to, well, clean out our chimney.  We had been aware that it needed to be done as we had had a guy out last spring to address an issue with our furnace (soot was exhausting out the air intake valve in the basement) and when he pulled the exhaust tube away from the chimney we discovered a buckets-worth of crap (soot, brick and mortar dust and pieces) in the elbow.  So we new there was possible damage and definite need for cleaning and assessment.

So we had a guy come out to clean it and check it out.  What he found was that our chimney was not in good shape.  Being that the house is over 120 years old, this was not a big surprise.  But the cost associated with fixing it was a little hard to swallow (almost $3000 to insert a lining and fill in with mortar).  Given the damage, I know we have to swallow it – there are apparently places in the chimney where you can see the wallboards.

So in preparation for Christmas, we have spent large sums of money on making sure the chimney is ready for good old Saint Nick and buying tickets to fly south to visit family.  Presents have yet to be budgeted.  At least I will only have to reassure my wife that we are not getting carbon monoxide poisoning until the chimney guys return next week.

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