Why do I get smoke in my basement fireplace whenever I start a fire in my first floor fireplace?
Mike from Pittsburgh, PA
You probably have a crack in the flu between the two chimneys. This happened at my parents house. Had to call in someone to get it relined, but it was covered under homeowners insurance
Check your chimney flue to make sure that it isn't plugged with a bird's nest, etc.
Hire a professional chimeny sweep to clean it out.
My husband and I were overtaken by smoke inhalation and almost died because a bird had built a nest in the top of the wood burning stove exhaust. Our basement was filling with smoke while we were both asleep. It's not worth losing your life.
WARNING: STOP USING YOUR FIREPLACE IMMEDIATELY UNTIL YOU CORRECT THE PROBLEM!
YOur chimney isn't drawing perfectly, so the above posts make sense. Also, build a tiny fire first to warm the chimney. After ten minutes add fuel. Don't ever burn lots of paper such as gift wrapping. If you want to know if it's drawing well, look at the chimney from outside. Only when heat makes it to the top of the chimney will it draw. A fire making lots of smoke with a chimney not ready to draw will have to put its smoke somewhere. Good luck - a warm fire is very worth it.
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