Frank Lesh, pictured in front of the Twisted Chimneys located on CSIA's trade show booth backdrop.

Frank Lesh, pictured in front of the Twisted Chimneys located on CSIA’s trade show booth backdrop.

PHILADELPHIA, Pennsylvania — To say the Chimney Safety Institute of America has had a major impact on Frank Lesh, executive director of the ASHI (American Society of Home Inspectors) would be an understatement.

“Besides being executive director, I’m also a home inspector and years ago my (Great Lakes) chapter and I attended the Chimney Safety Institute of America tour,” Lesh told us this week inside of booth 705.

“We took a bus down to Indianapolis and saw your facility, and it was fantastic,” said Lesh, of Home Sweet Home, which serves the Greater Chicago area. “First of all, I was really impressed by the (CSIA’s rooftop Twisted) chimneys when we approached, and when I got inside … the detail, the things you had, was fantastic.”

Why does Lesh like CSIA? “As inspectors, we can only touch the surface of the fireplace and the flue because we just do the basics, visual inspections, so we have to refer to experts when we want to get really involved … we call you guys.”

“It’s the professionalism. And the training you guys do for your own members is fantastic. For home inspectors … we could’ve spent a full day. It’s great to see professionals that are willing to share their experience and knowledge.”

“The Chimney Safety Institute of America, that’s the place to go,” Lesh told us.

MORE: Hear directly from ASHI home inspectors in this video.

Bob MacDonald, a home inspector from OmniSpect Inspection Services of New Hampshire, was one of many other home inspectors who knew of CSIA and were already referring their clients to a CSIA sweep in their zip code. MacDonald said he is a three-decade veteran and knows just enough to do a basic exterior inspection along with a visual inspection of the chimney. Why leave it up to CSIA?

“Because they are certified, they have taken the course, they have passed the test, they have ongoing training, they have to (pay) every year, and they have got all their equipment. They are serious about their job and they are serious about what they do,” MacDonald said.

“If you see someone with the certification, CSIA, that’s the one you want, right there.”