One of the biggest causes of draughts in the home is the chimney. Not only can cold air bluster down your chimney flue, but it could be the leading cause of draughts throughout your home too. A phenomenon called the Stack Effect causes warm air to rise up and out of the top of the house (almost always via the chimney). Unfortunately this lovely warm air then needs to be replaced, this leads to cold air being pulled into the home from the outside. This cold air is what you would recognise as pesky draughts around your house.
You can break this cycle by blocking off your chimney. If the chimney is blocked off, significantly less warm air escapes up and out the home. Meaning it never needs to be replaced by cool air from the outside. This leads to a significant reduction in draughts all over the house without situational draughtproofing!
How does a Chimney Balloon work?
The Chimney Balloon is a carefully created, purpose built, inflatable chimney draught excluder. It simply inflates inside the chimney, gently moulds to the walls of the flue and grips into place. It then sits there and acts as a physical blockade to cold air blustering down the chimney, as well as preventing warm air from escaping up and out of your room.
The Chimney Balloon chimney draught excluder is primarily a draught stopper – so it acts as a physical barrier to the air flowing inside the chimney and prevents it from moving up or down. This stops cold air from entering your home, but also prevents warm air from escaping too. This means the product is incredibly efficient at saving you heat and money, it also helps your rooms feel physically warmer – you might find you’re even turning your thermostat down a touch.
The inflatable nature of the product also means it has some insulating properties too, the balloon traps air inside the plastic – similar to how there’s a layer of air trapped between glass in double glazing – this ensures that not only does the balloon physically stop cold air, but it insulates against cold temperatures too.
But, the benefits don’t end there. The Balloon’s ability to reduce airflow also means it’s an effective wind noise stopper too. Sometimes chimney wind noise is caused by the rushing of air up and down the chimney. This air movement reverberates as a loud roaring noise – which can be incredibly annoying, particularly on windy days.
It also acts as a physical barrier to rain droplets, small debris pieces and dust.
There’s a range of different sizes to fit most chimneys, meaning chances are we have something that will work well for you.
Does the Chimney Balloon cause damp?
The short answer to this is no. But here’s a longer explanation.
The Balloon has been carefully designed to ensure that air can still flow past the product. Despite its ability to conform and mould, the Balloon will never quite form a perfect seal with the walls of the chimney, the material it is made from will slightly wrinkle and fold, allowing air to escape past it, just enough to ensure damp can’t form. However, its small enough that you won’t notice it occurring and it doesn’t affect the energy saving ability of the product.
Properties built with UK building regulations in mind, should have sufficient ventilation built in already, so even if you blocked the chimney off completely using building materials, damp shouldn’t form. If you fit a Chimney Balloon and damp does form, please get in touch with us, as this could indicate a larger issue with ventilation and dampness in your property and we may be advise who to contact.
So, how do I fit one?
Well, to be honest, they’re pretty easy to install and maintain. Plus, because they’re made of high quality, durable, british food-grade plastic you can use your balloon again and again.
Firstly you need to ensure you have the right size balloon for your chimney. Make sure you check out our handy measuring guide and size calculator before you buy, that way you can rest assured you’ve got the perfect balloon for your flue.
Double check if you need a foot pump. We’ve found that most of our customers have a suitable foot pump lying around their house so many people don’t need an inflation device. But, if you need something to help inflate your balloon take at look at our carefully chosen foot pumps, or if your balloon is very small – mouth inflation tubes.
Depending on where you want to fit your balloon, you might want to consider a handgrip extension kit – but only if you need to fit the product high up.
Once you’ve got all your bits and pieces ready, you can get your Chimney Balloon in that flue!
- Firstly you’re going to want to open the tap and pop a little bit of air into the product. Just enough so that it isn’t entirely flat. Close the tap so the air stays in place.
- Then place the balloon inside the chimney and hold it in the area you’d like it to sit.
- Re-open the tap and start inflating. Keep inflating the product until you can feel that it’s got a good secure grip of the chimney walls. Close the tap.
- We’d advise giving the balloon a gentle push, just to double check that it feels firm and is secure. You can also push on the handgrip, double check that it springs back and hangs freely.
- We advise going back to check on the product after a couple of hours, this is because sometimes the air inside the product can contract, causing the balloon to deflate very slightly, so you may need to top it up.
- Long term – we’d advise giving the product a quick check every 6 months or so and topping up as required, but that should be your balloon in place!
How long does the Chimney Balloon chimney draught excluder last?
So, all of our Chimney Balloons have a one year guarantee. So if the product breaks within 12 months you’re entitled to a brand new replacement. You just need to get in contact with one of our lovely customer service team members and they’ll be able to help you out. If your product breaks outside of this period still get in touch, as there’s a good chance we can give you some repair tips, or sort you out with a replacement order if needed. But, we’ve had Chimney Balloons last many years, with a few surviving more than a decade!
If you have any query at all regarding any of our products, please don’t hesitate to get in touch – our lovely customer service team would be happy to help!