My husband and I had gone out to the bank today, and decided to go out to lunch.
We weren’t gone but a couple of hours, so we thought the fireplace would be fine till we got home.
The wood was smoldering slowly and there was no full out burning in any of the fire logs. We thought we would be fine for two or three hours, but we were totally wrong. The fireplace hadn’t quit burning, but it had started smoking. I got into the house first and all I could say was ‘Holy Smoke!’. I started to cough and I couldn’t stop. We had the ventilation fan in the bathroom, on its highest speed. The ventilation fan over the oven, was at its highest speed. The ceiling fans were on high and we had the windows open. It had become windy while we were away. The wind had kicked back through the chimney and caused the smoke to come into the chimney and out of the hearth. Four hours later, I still have a headache from the smoke that was in the house. We only started the fireplace because we have a couple days where the weather is going to be too cool to go without heating. Now I wish we had just turned up the thermostat and allowed the furnace to warm up the house. My husband insisted the fireplace would be fine and that we hadn’t used it much over the last few months. I’m sure our going away for a few hours hadn’t caused the problem, but he is feeling a bit guilty for my asthma attack.