How to Put Out a Fire in a Fireplace

Wintertime is a great time to light a fire in your fireplace. The days are growing shorter and the temperatures outside are dropping. Listening to the snap, crackle, and pop gives us a feel of a new season and relaxation. After you are done sitting by the fireplace, you may be wondering how to put out a fire in a fireplace. There are several steps including opening the damper and using the poker to take out burning logs. It also involves putting out the embers and stirring the ashes.

Fireplace tools can help move the embers and ashes.

Tools I Need to Put Out a Fire in Fireplace

To successfully extinguish a fire in the fireplace, you will need the following tools:

These tools will assist you in safely and effectively putting out the fire.

Steps to Put Out a Fire in a Fireplace

Follow these steps to properly put out a fire in your fireplace:

  1. Open the damper: Start by opening the damper to allow increased airflow, which will help the fire burn faster.
  2. Use a fireplace poker or tongs: Safely move any remaining logs around to separate them and spread them out within the fireplace.
  3. Remove burning logs: Using the poker or tongs, carefully remove any burning logs from the fireplace and place them into a metal bucket or container.
  4. Extinguish the embers: Gently rake the remaining embers and ash with the poker until they are evenly spread out. This helps the fire burn out faster.
  5. Pour water over the embers: Slowly and carefully pour water over the embers to completely douse the fire. Be cautious of steam and hot steam rising from the fireplace.
  6. Stir and repeat if necessary: Use the poker to stir the wet ashes and embers to ensure everything is completely extinguished. If needed, repeat steps 4 and 5 until the fire is completely out.
  7. Dispose of ashes: Allow the ashes to cool completely before disposing of them in a non-combustible container. Do not dispose of ashes in flammable materials or containers.

Fire should never be left unattended.

What Not to Do When Putting Out a Fire in a Fireplace

There are certain actions you should avoid when extinguishing a fire in the fireplace:

  • Never use water on a grease fire: If your fire involves grease or oil, do not attempt to put it out with water. Water can cause the fire to spread and worsen the situation. Instead, use a fire extinguisher specifically designed for grease fires or smother the flames with baking soda or salt.
  • Avoid using flammable liquids: Never use gasoline, lighter fluid, or any other flammable liquids to put out a fire in the fireplace. These substances can cause the fire to grow uncontrollably and may lead to severe accidents.
  • Do not leave the fire unattended: Always stay near the fire until it is completely extinguished. Leaving a fire unattended can be dangerous and may result in accidental fires.

Other Recommended Maintenance

Now that you know about putting out a fire in the fireplace, let’s take a look at a few other areas of recommended maintenance. One of those is chimney fires. Many people wonder if a chimney fire will burn itself out and the answer is no. It starts because of a dirty chimney and can be difficult to put out.

Another is clearing a clog out of the chimney. To do this, use a brush safe for the flue and sweep away all the debris. It is important to keep this clean so you can avoid clogs or fires in the future.

Lastly, it is a good idea to check your fireplace for carbon monoxide. To do this, inspect the fireplace and then make sure a carbon monoxide system is installed. It is important so you can make sure your family is safe.

When Do I Call a Professional

In some cases, it may be necessary to seek professional help to deal with a fire in the fireplace. Consider calling a professional if:

  • The fire is too large to handle: If the fire becomes too big or uncontrollable, it is crucial to call emergency services immediately.
  • There is excessive smoke or unusual smells: Excessive smoke or strange odors may indicate an underlying problem with the fireplace or chimney. It is best to contact a professional for inspection and repairs.
  • You are unsure about handling the situation: If you are uncertain about how to safely extinguish the fire or have any doubts, it is wise to seek help from a professional.


Knowing how to properly put out a fire in a fireplace is essential for home safety. By following the steps outlined in this guide and avoiding common mistakes, you can ensure the safe and efficient extinguishment of the fire. Remember to use the appropriate tools, act cautiously, and seek professional assistance when needed. Call House Inspection Associates to conduct a full home inspection in the Virginia, D.C., and Maryland areas.

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