Question? Just ask us!
Free Encyclopedia of Building & Environmental Inspection, Testing, Diagnosis, Repair
InspectAPedia ® Home
CHIMNEY INSPECTION DIAGNOSIS REPAIR
BACKDRAFTING HEATING EQUIPMENT
CARBON MONOXIDE - CO
CHIMNEY CAP & CROWN
CHIMNEY CLEANING PROCEDURES
CHIMNEY COMPONENT DEFINITIONS
CHIMNEY CRACK DETECTION & DIAGNOSIS
CHIMNEY DRAFT & PERFORMANCE
CHIMNEY FIRE ACTION / PREVENTION
CHIMNEY HEIGHT & CLEARANCE CODE
CHIMNEY INSPECTION, FLUE INTERIOR
CHIMNEY LEANING, SEPARATION, MOVEMENT
CHIMNEY REPAIR METHODS
CHIMNEY STAINS & LEAKS
CHIMNEY TYPES & MATERIALS
COAL STOVE OPERATION & SAFETY
DIRECT VENTS / SIDE WALL VENTS
DRAFT HOOD, GAS HEATER
DRAFT REGULATOR, DAMPER, BOOSTER
FIRE CLEARANCES INDOORS
FIREPLACES & HEARTHS
FLUE VENT CONNECTORS
MASONRY CHIMNEY GUIDE
METAL CHIMNEYS & FLUES
SAFETY RECALLS CHIMNEYS VENTS HEATERS
SOOT AT CHIMNEY TOP
STAIN DIAGNOSIS on BUILDING EXTERIORS
WOOD-OIL COMBINATION HEATERS
WOOD STOVE OPERATION & SAFETY
Chimney chase & top shroud fire case report: this article provides photos and description of a Moorpark CA chimney fire whose origin was an unsafe chimney top shroud. Remarkably the shroud bore a counterfeit UL listing label.
A history of building fires traced to improper construction and installation of non-listed decorative chimney top shrouds has led to expert recommendations to improve building safety and reduce fire risks discussed further at CHIMNEY SHROUDS.
Green links show where you are. © Copyright 2015 InspectApedia.com, All Rights Reserved.
Watch out: according to both Steve Werner  and to Dale Feb , some fireplace top shrouds or surrounds installed on some chimney chase tops may unsafe due to heat trapping at the chimney top. Such shrouds usually violate local and national building codes as well. The house fire illustrated by these photographs (provided by Mr. Werner) occurred in Moorpark CA [date, fire district, details needed] and was attributed to an un-listed and unsafe chimney top decorative shroud atop a wood framed fireplace chase.
[Click to enlarge any image]
Common causes of factory-built fireplace and chimney and chimney chase fires are the combination of a metal or factory-built fireplace or fire-box and chimney combined with a decorative chimney top cap or shroud that was installed over the manufacturer's spark arrestor and cap assembly. At below left you can see the remains of the un-listed chimney top, now on the ground after the building fire.
At CHIMNEY SHROUDS we noted reports of chimney & house fires traced to unsafe decorative shrouds installed atop wood chimney chases and factory-built metal chimneys. Baird (1991) reported on a number of chimney & house fires occurring in California from 1989 through the early 1990's and explained that all of the fires investigated occurred in chimney chases that had been equipped with decorative sheet metal "shrouds".
At below left you will note the very extensive roof and ceiling fire damage to the home where this fireplace shroud was installed. At below right the worker is using red paint to mark an unsafe chimney top termination [details needed].
Baird also reported on the reasons that un-listed chimney top shrouds were the cause of serious building fires and recommended a variety of steps to reduce the risk of future fires including using only listed chimney top shrouds and the inspection of both existing and new factory-built fireplace and chimney installations.
Baird concluded that "Failure to fabricate a chase flashing according to the manufacturer's instructions constitutes a violation of the Uniform Mechanical Code" and concluded that "... future installations must not include unlisted attachments to a listed [fireplace or chimney] assembly."
Building Code Citations for Decorative Chimney Top Shrouds
Fake or "counterfeit" UL listing label compared with a valid UL label for chimney top decorative shrouds
Below is an example of a valid chimney top shroud UL Listing Label from Chimney King
More examples of listed chimney top shrouds and proper valid UL listing labels for these products can be seen at CHIMNEY SHROUDS.
- Chimney fire & UL label photographs were provided by Stephen Werner General Manager Chimney King, LLC P.O. Box 8 Gurnee, IL 60031 Corporate (847) 244-8860 Fax (847) 244-8694 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
InspectAPedia.com is an independent publisher of building, environmental, and forensic inspection, diagnosis, and repair information provided free to the public - we have no business nor financial connection with any manufacturer or service provider discussed at our website.
Continue reading at CHIMNEY SHROUDS or select a topic from the More Reading links shown below.
Suggested citation for this web page
Green link shows where you are in this article series.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
No FAQs have been posted for this page. Try the search box below or CONTACT US by email if you cannot find the answer you need at InspectApedia.
Use the "Click to Show or Hide FAQs" link just above to see recently-posted questions, comments, replies, try the search box just below, or if you prefer, post a question or comment in the Comments box below and we will respond promptly.
Search the InspectApedia website
HTML Comment Box is loading comments...
Technical Reviewers & References