Chimneys are designed with several measures in place. One important – yet often overlooked – part of your fireplace system is the chimney damper. Fortunately for those in the Hillsborough area, we’re the team to trust for damper repair and damper replacement services.

Now, some older homes may have a chimney without a damper and, although it isn’t legally required, every fireplace should have a damper.  If you’re one of the unlucky few who don’t currently have a chimney damper, Highpoint Chimney Services would not only be happy to help inform you about the importance of having a damper…we can get you on the schedule to have one installed.

Why Are Chimney/Fireplace Dampers Necessary?

Chimney dampers are necessary for several reasons:


  • Dampers help to control the efficiency and intensity of a fire. By partially closing the damper, you can restrict airflow, reducing the size of the flame. 
  • An open damper ensures that smoke and gases from the fire are properly vented from your home. 
  • A damper not only helps prevent the warm air from escaping your home, it also keeps the cold outside air from coming in.
  • A fireplace damper is a great way to keep any rain, animals, and debris from falling into the fireplace.
a white old-fashioned-looking fireplace with a wooden table with a vase of flowers in front of it

In the end, if the same fireplace that is heating your home is also where most of your heat is escaping when no fires are lit, then you might actually not be benefiting from it as much as you thought you were. Let us help fix that!

What Types of Chimney Dampers Are Available?

There are two basic kinds of dampers that we commonly install:

  • Throat Dampers: This is the most common and traditional type of damper found in most fireplaces. It has a cast iron or steel handle that lifts a large metal plate that separates the firebox and the flue. A throat damper has a few different variations for handles, this includes either a poker, rotary, or pivot.
  • Lock-Top Dampers: Also called chimney cap dampers or top-sealing dampers, these feature a small, spring loaded door located inside the cap at the top of the chimney. A steel cable is run down the entire length of the chimney to a mounted handle in the fireplace. This type of chimney damper is often considered superior to the traditional throat damper because 1) it seals at the top, 2) the handle location is more convenient, and 3) the damper has a silicone rubber gasket around the edge to ensure an air-tight seal.

With the help of Highpoint Chimney Services, together, we can determine which damper is the best for your chimney – all while taking into consideration what you want, as well as the specific characteristics and needs of your chimney.

Common Myths & Misunderstandings About Chimney Dampers

a upward-looking view of a chimney chase with a chase cover

Myth #1: Chimney dampers are only necessary during the winter months. 

Dampers are important all year round! They help prevent drafts, improve energy efficiency, and control airflow even when the fireplace isn’t in use during the warmer months. 

Myth #2: Open fireplace dampers help keep your home cooler in the summer.

There is a misconception that leaving the damper open will allow warm air to rise out of the chimney, thus keeping your home cooler. Unfortunately, the opposite is true. An open damper will allow whatever temperature the outside air is to draft in. All this does is counteract your current cooling system.

Myth #3: Keeping the damper open will help air out your chimney.

Actually, keeping your damper open in order to air out your chimney can have an opposite effect. Humid outside air can mix with the creosote buildup within the chimney and fireplace and actually produce a foul odor. Soot and dust may also be blown into your home from the downdraft of warm air, making for some poor indoor air quality.

Myth #4: There is no need to close the damper because the chimney cap protects the chimney system.

While the chimney cap does help keep water, debris, and animals out of the chimney, it does not block airflow and drafts. A closed damper is a good secondary boundary that helps keep those unwanted items from having full access to your home. 

Looking for a Chimney Company You Can Trust? Work With Highpoint Chimney Services

Here at Highpoint Chimney Services, we understand that every chimney is unique, and factors such as frequency of use, climate, and personal preferences play a significant role in choosing the right damper. Our knowledgeable chimney technicians will assess your chimney, discuss your requirements, and provide professional recommendations to ensure you make an informed decision.

Rest assured that, with us, you will receive top-quality installation, exceptional customer service, and ongoing support. We are committed to ensuring that your chimney operates efficiently and safely, and we take pride in delivering reliable solutions tailored to your specific needs.

Call Highpoint Chimney Services today at 908-864-4114 or reach out to us right here on our website.