How to Measure your Fireplace for your Chimney Balloon

June 11, 2015 Sarah H

1.    Before sizing your chimney make sure your fireplace and chimney is cold and you have no hot embers in your fireplace that can be a danger to you. If you sweep and vacuum your fireplace ash first, you will find this whole process of measuring much cleaner. But never vacuum hot ash!

2.    With safety goggles on, look into your chimney with a flashlight and identify the damper (a metal flap that closes the chimney), if you have one. Also, identify the most narrow section of your chimney that you can touch with a 2 foot stick.

3.    Follow these guidelines when selecting an area to install a Chimney Balloon.

  • Select an area that is not interfered with by the damper flap or any hardware.
  • The area must have about 6" in height of parallel or slightly sloping walls with significant texture for the balloon to grab and lodge in during inflation. 
  • Just above the damper, or in the bottom of the smoke shelf, is often an ideal location to install a Chimney Balloon.
  • If your installation point cannot be easily touched by hand you will want to purchase an HEK Extender with your Chimney Balloon.

* Notes on smoke shelves or smoke chambers: 
It may be possible to find a suitable location in or above the smoke chamber, but you will need an HEK Extender to install the Balloon in a higher location.

4.    Measure the length and depth of the location you choose to install a Chimney Balloon. It is possible to measure with a standard tape measure, but it is easier to measure with a foldable carpenters ruler.

5.    We recommend that you buy the Chimney Balloon that is exactly the same dimension of your install location. But, It is OK to buy a Chimney Balloon that is up to 6 inches larger in either dimension than your measured opening, since you will be inflating it into place. DO NOT buy a Chimney Balloon that is too small for the measured opening.

6.    Visit the Chimney Balloon shopping page to purchase the proper sized Chimney Balloon.

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