How to Tell if a Chimney Damper is Open or Closed

How to Tell if a Chimney Damper is Open or Closed

Call Us at 877-959-3534 for Chimney Service

A lot of homeowners know about their chimney damper because it should be opened before you start a fire, but do not know to tell if the damper is closed or open.

The chimney damper is in the flue and they are placed there to control ventilation. Dampers also send away smoke. Imagine your home that fills up with smoke each time you are lighting a fire. Chimney dampers will also control the intensity of the fire. While your damper is adjusted, there is oxygen that flows through the fire.

You can call a chimney inspection service if you need to have it checked. Here are signs that your chimney is open or closed:

Inspect it Visually

When you perform a visual inspection, you are on the right path. The majority of dampers are in the chimney base’s interior, so you can crouch down and peer up inside your chimney. What are you really looking for? It is a type of metal that should be angled by using the knob or chain to control it to the open or closed position. In case it is too dark, you should use a flashlight or light on the phone. When you peek in, if you can see through the damper and past the interior of your chimney, the damper is open. If you will only see a metal plate, the damper is closed.

Call Us at 877-959-3534 for Chimney Service

By Creating a Small Fire

You should create a small fire with paper or a tinder at the fireplace. In case it is open, smoke is going to come out of your chimney without issues. However, if the flue is not open, the smoke will not go through a closed flue and go up the chimney. It will instead force its way into your home, which fills the room with smoke.

Check if There are Drafts

Maybe you cannot see the damper or are unsure if it is a little closed or opens all the way. Another way to know is to stick your hand close to the opening of your fireplace. If you feel a breeze, the damper is surely open. If you do not feel any draft, it is closed.

Look for a Damper Handle

In order to tell if the damper is closed or open, you should look for the damper controls. The traditional wood stove is normally a throat damper at the chimney flue’s base. You should look for a metal handle using a rotary-style screw or latch in the chimney throat. Aside from the flue, this handle might be located on the fireplace opening.

With chimney dampers, you should look for a chain inside the fireplace. Generally, chimney cap dampers are closed if the chain is hooked to the wall surrounding your fireplace. If it hangs freely, then the damper is closed.

You Can Feel a Breeze

When you try to feel the breeze, it is another method that you can use to find out if you have a closed or open flue. Look for your hand in the fireplace and wait to notice in case you can feel the airflow. When you have an open flue, the air is going to flow down the chimney.

You Hear Noises Coming from Outside

If you do not want to stick your head or hand in the fireplace, you can tell if the damper is open or closed by just listening. Outside noises are going to amplify when you have an open damper. If you are quiet and just listen, you will hear outside noises.

Call Us at 877-959-3534 for Chimney Service

This post first appeared on

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

(877) 959-3534