How Does Your Chimney Work?

How does your chimney work? There’s nothing more comfortable and soothing than sitting in front of the fireplace on a chilly winter night in your Mississippi home. Do you know that your chimney is what makes this experience possible? If you are interested in learning about what constitutes a chimney and how the system works as a whole, continue reading:

Working of a Chimney: Know the Basics

Chimneys work by removing the byproduct gases such as CO2 and other hot gases from the heating unit inside your home. Chimneys are required around all places that generate heat. You can consider chimneys as an exhaust system for all the hot and harmful gases to escape into the atmosphere, thereby maintaining an optimum temperature and quality of air inside your home.

Stack Effect – Explained

Airflow is the central concept to the working of a chimney. Due to the stack effect, the warm air from the ground rises through the chimney just like warm, moist air escapes your attic through vents in the ridges.

An optimally performing chimney has good drafts (rising warm air). A poorly performing chimney, on the other hand, cannot pull smoke and gases out of your home that efficiently which ultimately leaves your room with polluted and cold air.

Factors Affecting Chimney Drafts

Air Pressure

If the air pressure in your home is ideal, the rate of flow of air into your home will be equal to the rate of flow of air away from your home. The warmer and lighter air must be able to flow freely through the chimney, leaving the cooler and heavier air at the bottom. This fresh air enters your home through gaps in windows, trims, etc.

Ideally, you should seal all gaps in your home. However, if the gaps are sealed too tightly, there could be a buildup of negative pressure inside your home. In this case, the fire may not burn or the effectiveness of the gas furnace may reduce over time. If there are plenty of air leaks in your home, it will take all the warm air in thereby reducing your home’s energy efficiency significantly.


The flue liner tiles are installed vertically on the walls of the chimney. Ideally, they should be 1 inch wide for every 10 square inches of the fireplace opening. This is to ensure the air travels at an ideal velocity through the chimney. If the flue is too big, there could be too much hot air exiting your home resulting in colder temperatures inside. If the flue is too small, the hot air may not leave your home at the same rate, therefore, resulting in a contaminated and smoke-filled room.

Height of the Chimney

The taller the chimney, the stronger will be the draft. Again, it should not be too tall to form a higher draft, which in turn, can cool your home dramatically. Ideally, the chimneys have a height of at least 15 feet from their base to the top of the chimney. Moreover, the top of the chimney must extend out of the roof by at least 3 inches.

On the other hand, if your chimney is situated less than 10 feet away from any building or any other obstruction, then your chimney’s height should be at least 2 feet taller than the obstruction.


For the draft to be ideal, the chimney must not have any structural damage or obstructions within it. Check the inner lining of the chimneys regularly with the help professionals. More often, there could be an accumulation of smoke particles, flotsam, or fowl, and other obstacles.

Get In Touch with the Leading Real Estate and Home Improvement Experts

If you are convinced that your roof is the root cause of your chimney woes, get in touch with our experienced pros today. Contact Mississippi Landsource or Doug Rushing Realty for top tips.