How Can I Tell if My Chimney Needs Cleaning?

How Can I Tell if My Chimney Needs Cleaning?

There’s nothing like sitting around your fireplace within the winter, feeling warm and comfy.  To get the foremost out of your fireplace, the chimney needs to be cleaned out periodically. Here may be a guide to assist you to recognize if and once you got to clean out your chimney.

The things to see when inspecting your chimney are black, oily spots on the walls of your fireplace, poorly burning fires, odors coming from the fireside, and animals making noise inside the walls of your chimney and host others.

smoke coming out of gray house roof

Now that you simply know the signs to seem for, let’s examine all in greater depth.

How You Can Tell That Your Chimney Needs To Be Cleaned:

  • Oily Spots on the Walls of Your Fireplace

The black, oily spots on the walls of your fireplace are a tar-like substance called creosote. This substance builds up all the thanks to the highest of your chimney and may cause some hindrance to airflow.  This drop-in airflow causes fires to burn colder and in irregular ways.

  • Poorly Burning Fires

If you’re having difficulty starting fires in your fireplace, it might be because the chimney is clogged, or there’s a malfunction with the fireside damper. Both of those issues can keep a fireplace from getting a sufficient supply of oxygen to burn properly.

  • Odors Coming from the fireside

Creosote features a campfire-like odor that you simply can smell within the area around the fireplace.  This odor might smell good to your nose, but it’s a sign that the buildup in your chimney can erupt and cause significant damage to your home and everything in it.

  • Animals Inside the Chimney

Animal nests can both block the airflow in your chimney and erupt while burning wood in your fireplace.  Bird nests are most ordinarily found at the very top of your chimney, covering the vents. Squirrels also are known to form nests in chimneys for his or her young.

These signs are easy to identify, but taking steps to make sure your house is safe from the danger of fireside damage is that the next step.  You can hire a chimney sweep to wash your chimney and hearth or roll in the hay yourself.

Are There Visible Tar Deposits In Your Chimney?

Thick black deposits of creosote can sometimes be visible in chimneys which require to be cleaned. this will be round the stove, on the damper, or stuck to the chimney lining itself. If you’ll see deposits easily, or if you’ll extract a number of the buildup by reaching into your chimney, call a knowledgeable chimney sweep immediately.

Is Soot Dropping Into Your Fireplace?

If soot dropping back to your fireplace may be a common sight, your chimney will need a radical sweeping! Soot can collect throughout the chimney and may come dislodged by wind or other debris, making blockages worse or may be damaging your chimney or fireplace.

fire burning on fireplace

It takes more effort to urge a fireplace going and keep it going. It’s harder to urge a fireplace started, which could be because your chimney is clogged and airflow is restricted. Fire requires oxygen

How To Clean Your Chimney

There are a couple of different methods for cleaning out your chimney.

white concrete building under white clouds during daytime

1. The primary and simplest way is using a Creosote Sweeping Log.

These logs are treated chemically and additives that bond with the creosote, reducing the deposits and making them less likely to start a fireplace. Over the subsequent few weeks of burning wood logs, the warmth and air hack the treated creosote, sending it out the highest of your chimney or dropping it down into your fireplace.

The campfire odor caused by the creosote will mostly getaway once your chimney is cleaned, but the brick or stone material absorbs a number of the odor left by the creosote.  The smell is harmless; as long because the creosote is gone, there’s no risk of a fireplace starting in your chimney and spreading to the remainder of your house.

2. Another method of cleaning you’ll need to employ is the chimney brush.

This is an extended pole with a bundle of wire bristles at the top.

If the creosote buildup is just too thick for the Creosote Sweeping Log to interrupt down, sweeping the creosote by hand with a chimney brush is often an efficient alternative.  This also can knock other debris and animal nests freed from the chimney walls and vents to open the airways, creating better airflow for a warmer, more even flame.

Chimney Cleaning Safety

When cleaning your chimney, you’ll scrape off tons of creosote.  Usually, it comes off in big chunks which will be discarded. sometimes the creosote is in smaller flakes and may agitate and harm your airways.

A disposable breathing mask is suggested when sweeping your chimney out. you’ll get to get on the roof to succeed at the very top of the chimney also.  Be careful and secure yourself to a hard and fast point on the roof. an excellent place to strap yourself up is that the chimney itself. If you are doing prefer to sweep your chimney confirm to follow our roof safety guide found here: Roof Safety Guide.

How Often Do You Have To Clean Your Chimney?

The National Fire Protection Association says chimneys should be inspected once a year.  The best time to try to do it might be within the late summer/early fall before use in the winter. If you notice any of the signs in your inspection, it’s time to wash out the chimney.

If you’re buying a replacement house, you don’t know when the last inspection was, so it’s prudent to examine it as soon as possible. You don’t want any surprises within the first winter living in your new home.  Some house fires are traced back to an unclean chimney, so inspecting your chimney may be a must if you propose using your fireplace.

When Do You Have To Hire Someone To Clean Your Chimney?

You may be realizing that cleaning your chimney isn’t a simple task.  Some belongings you may run into while trying to wash are beyond your ability.

In these cases, it’s going to be time to rent knowledgeable to filter out your chimney.  If you’ve got any hang-ups about cleaning the debris out of your chimney, leaving it to the professionals will prevent tons of headaches (and backaches).

What Is The Big Difference Between Cleaning A Chimney Yourself And Hiring Someone?

When it involves cost, you want to determine which route to require. Hiring a chimney sweeping company can cost anywhere from $80-$200, whereas buying a chimney brush will only cost you around $70 at most hardware stores. There are pros and cons to both avenues, and intrinsically you want to determine what works best for you.

Hiring a corporation to wash your chimney can offer you peace of mind knowing that it had been done right, but cleaning your chimney yourself can prevent tons of cash within the end of the day.  As another bonus, you’ll have a replacement skill with which to impress your fellow homeowners.

Why Do I Even Need To Keep My Chimney Clean?

If your chimney gets clogged, it could have serious consequences. it’s not a matter of aesthetics or cleanliness; it is often a hazard.

The primary purpose of your chimney is to vent the by-products of combustion from your home. Creosote can build-up on the inner walls of your chimney. That build-up will eventually interfere with the chimney function, which is gas and smoke removal.

When there’s a severe build-up, those gases can return inside your home and cause various respiratory problems. carbon monoxide gas poisoning is one of the foremost severe issues which will occur. It can even cause death.

In addition to health issues, creosote build-up can cause a chimney fire.

All of those issues haven’t any obvious warning signs. the simplest thanks to preventing them are to find out the way to maintain and clean your chimney and professional help when needed.

Some of the results of dirty chimneys aren’t dangerous, but also will affect your home’s enjoyment. an unclean chimney may cause a bad smell within the house, especially during summer. Dust and dark residue also can enter your house and stain it.

How Do I Inspect And Keep My Chimney Clean?

Correctly cleaning a chimney includes thorough sweeping from the house, through the fireside, and from the roof, to succeed in all the chimney parts.

There are “brushes” made, especially for that purpose, and that they are often purchased in every well-equipped ironmongery shop. you’ll also need hand and eye protection, a vacuum, and possibly other tools. The cleaning process is often dangerous because it includes maneuvering on the roof

The typical homeowner doesn’t have the skillset and tools to wash his/her chimney correctly. For peace of mind, it’s recommended to rent a knowledgeable chimney cleaning company.

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