By Lauren DePuere, The Associated PressA broken fireplace can be repaired by simply removing the chimney, removing a piece of furniture and replacing it with a new one.
But when that piece of wood or fireplace piece is not properly installed, or when the fireplace or chimney is still broken, the repair can be expensive.
To get the job done, homeowners first must identify the cause of the problem and install the correct wood, woodwork or chimneys, which can take up to six months, according to the U.S. National Fire Protection Association.
The National Fire Insurance Association, which oversees insurance coverage for fire and safety, estimates the average cost of repairs for a fireplace or other fire damage to be about $2,000 to $3,000.
For homeowners with existing damage, however, the cost can be even higher, depending on the type of problem.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety says a homeowner who installs an incorrect wood or chimneline may be responsible for an additional $5,000 or more in damage.
In most cases, homeowners can claim for the cost of replacing the wood, but it can also be costly to get a replacement.
If a new wood or metal fixture is not installed, homeowners must replace a broken chimney or a piece that is not correctly installed.
The NFIP has set an online tool to help homeowners fix damaged or missing chimneys or furniture.
The tool has a guide on how to remove broken or missing furniture, which includes installing the proper wood and chimney replacement.
For a homeowner to be eligible for coverage, the home must have a total value of $300,000, and the homeowner must have the proper documentation to file for insurance.
The NFIP also requires a homeowner report the problem to the insurance company.
The U.N. agency says there is a national shortage of wood for fire-safe homes.
There are only about 50,000 firewood and metal fireplaces in the U to support the 1.3 million households in the country, according the NFIP.