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multi-flue chimney

17 years ago

I have a chimney with three flues: one for the boiler in the basement, one for the fireplace on the first floor, and one for the fireplace upstairs. The boiler and the upstairs work fine; my problem is with the first floor fireplace.

The flue for this fireplace goes up and to the right side of the chimney. (The upstairs flue goes up the middle, and the boiler is on the left.) From the bottom I can see only as far as the offset, but I've had it cleaned from the top, and the sweep said there were no obstructions.

The house is about 100 years old, and I've been here for 20 years. The previous owner had put an insert in the first floor fireplace, and I took it out. The damper was removed when the insert was installed, and apparently the masonry back shelf was removed as well. A sheet metal and angle iron shelf was reinstalled that appears to be about the proper size and shape, but there's no damper.

The fireplace smokes heavily unless the glass doors (which I installed) are closed. Sometimes I can open the doors just a bit, but anything more than a crack and the smoke comes out.

I have four fireplaces, and this is the only one that doesn't work properly. Of course, it's also the one I want the most to work properly. Any suggestions?

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