The importance of having your chimney and fireplace cleaned regularly really can’t be stressed enough. When you’re enjoying a cozy fire in your fireplace, it’s easy to forget how hot that fire is, and how much work your chimney has to do to keep your home safe.  But fire is a potentially destructive element, and a lot goes into harnessing it correctly so it’s safe to enjoy in your home.

The Danger of a Dirty Chimney

A dirty chimney can cause many different problems for your fireplace system and home. As your fireplace or appliance burns fuel, any unburned particles go into your chimney and leave a residue called creosote. This residue is highly flammable and is the cause of thousands of chimney fires a year, which not only cause serious structural damage to your chimney but can spread to your home. Creosote build in three stages, and if it is cleaned early on, it can be easy to remove. However, the longer it is left uncleaned and allowed to build the more dangerous and difficult to remove in becomes.

fireplace and chimney sweepingAlong with creosote, soot and ash can build up in your chimney vent. The buildup of these substances is a danger regardless of whether or not they are flammable, as they restrict the airflow of your chimney. One of your chimneys most important functions is to take smoke and dangerous gases out of your home. If the airflow is restricted, it’s difficult for these gases to leave and they may remain your home. Smoke lingering in your home is not only bad for your house and can stain and damage it but is dangerous to your health.

Signs you need a chimney cleaning

As a rule of thumb, generally you should have your chimney cleaned at least once a year. However, there are many factors that can affect this, including the weather, how you use your fireplace, how your appliance is working and more. For that reason, it’s important not to really on the once a year rule too heavily, and to pay attention to how your chimney is functioning so you know if it needs to be cleaned sooner than you thought. Some signs your chimney may need a cleaning are:

  1. You’re having trouble starting a fire in your fireplace. This can be a sign the airflow of your chimney is clogged. If your chimney is connected to another appliance, the same is true if that appliance is not working as efficiently as it used to.
  2. Smoke won’t leave you home. Again, this can be a sign of a constricted airflow.
  3. Cold air around your chimney. This can either be a sign of a constricted airflow or there is damage in your chimney that needs to be addressed.
  4. Soot is dropping into your fireplace. This means there is a buildup of soot on your chimney walls that needs to be swept.
  5. A bad odor. Different smells can let you know if there is an issue in your chimney. A musty smell may be a sign water has gotten into your chimney, while a lingering burnt smell can be a sign of creosote.  

If you notice any of these signs it’s important to call a chimney sweep even if you had your chimney cleaned recently, so you take care of the problem before it escalates.

What to Expect from a Chimney Cleaning

When we clean your chimney, we want to make sure you feel completely confident we’re doing a thorough job, so you know your home is safe. We’ll go over the process with you before we start, so you know what to expect. With a network of chimney cleaners in over 150 cities in the southeast, our team has the experience and knowledge to give you the best chimney cleaning.

In the southeast looking for a chimney sweep to help you with your chimney? Our team wants to help you, call us today or make an appointment on our online form today.