Level 1 chimney inspections are your most common type of chimney inspection. If your appliance or your venting system has not changed in many years and you plan to use your system again, then a Level 1 inspection is a minimum requirement. A regular Level 1 chimney inspection is also recommended for a chimney that is used often to ensure the chimney is clean and maintaining its efficiency.
In a Level 1 inspection, your chimney service technician should examine the readily accessible** portions of the chimney’s exterior, interior and accessible* portions of the appliance and the chimney connection.
Your technician will be looking for the basic soundness of the chimney structure and flue as well as the basic appliance installations and connections. The technician will also verify the chimney is free of obstruction and combustible deposits.
Our Level 1 chimney inspections are only $99 and with every chimney cleaning we offer complimentary chimney inspections.
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A Level 2 inspection is required when any changes are made to the system. Changes can include a change in the fuel type, changes to the shape of, or material in, the flue (i.e. relining), or the replacement or addition of an appliance of a dissimilar type, input rating or efficiency.
Additionally, a Level 2 inspection is required upon the sale or transfer of a property or after an operation malfunction or external event that is likely to have caused damage to the chimney. Building fires, chimney fires, seismic events as well as weather events are all indicators that this level of inspection is warranted.
A Level 2 inspection is a more in-depth inspection than a Level 1 inspection. When a Level 1 or Level 2 inspection suggests a hidden hazard and the evaluation cannot be performed without special tools to access concealed areas of the chimney or flue, a Level 3 inspection is recommended.
A Level 2 inspection includes everything in a Level 1 inspection, plus the accessible portions of the chimney exterior and interior including attics, crawl spaces, and basements. It will address proper clearances from combustibles in accessible locations.
There are no specialty tools (i.e. demolition equipment) required to open doors, panels or coverings in performing a Level 2 inspection. A Level 2 inspection shall also include a visual inspection by video scanning or other means in order to examine the internal surfaces and joints of all flue liners incorporated within the chimney.
No removal or destruction of permanently attached portions of the chimney or building structure or finish shall be required by a Level 2 inspection.
A Level 3 chimney inspection is the least common type of chimney inspection and is only required in specific cases. It includes all the areas and items checked in a Level 1 and a Level 2 inspections, as well as potentially removing certain components of the building or chimney where necessary. This is not your typical chimney inspection. This is an extremely in depth inspection that is mostly necessary for commercial buildings and insurance claims.
Removal of components (i.e., chimney crown, interior chimney wall) shall only be required when necessary to gain access to areas that are necessary to inspect. When serious hazards are suspected, a Level 3 inspection may well be required to determine the condition of the chimney system on an extremely in depth level.
* Accessible: May require the use of commonly available tools to remove doors, panels or coverings, but will not damage the chimney or building structure or finish.
** Readily Accessible: Readily Accessible: Exposed, or capable of being exposed, for operation, inspection, maintenance or repair without the use of tools to open or remove doors, panels or coverings.