Chimney cleaning is an essential maintenance task for solid fuel-burning equipment. A chimney sweep is a professional who clears soot, ash, and other built-up by-products. Chimney maintenance, cleaning services processes must occur on a regular basis to ensure that the flue is not getting blocked. Insufficient ventilation in the chimney may lead to fumes and smoke entering the household. Depending on the location and local state requirements, chimney cleaning upholds specific safety requirements.
Chimney cleaning frequency varies depending on burning materials rather than at times used. Most chimney maintenance, cleaning services advise chimney cleaning at least once a year. Things such as build-ups, sound-proof, birds building nests, means that you need to check the chimney. The build-up within the chimney that causes the blockage is called creosote. Creosote is a dangerous by-product of burning wood. When there is not adequate air flow to the fire, it results in the wood smoldering.
This smoldering causes incomplete combustion. That is incomplete combustion that releases vapors up to the flue that becomes creosote. By giving the fire and wood sufficient oxygen to burn, the wood burns much hotter. Keeping a clean fire is a useful aid for chimney cleaning whenever a build-up of creosote occurs. The sticky tar-like substance of creosote sticks to all sides of the inside of the chimney. Then chimney cleaning must be provided. Chimney maintenance, cleaning services specialists warn that allowing creosote to build up poses health and safety risks.
Creosote tends to build up faster on exterior chimneys than interior chimneys. Firstly, when chimney cleaning, maintenance ascertain that there is no drag coming down the chimney. Chimney maintenance, repair services recommend that before undergoing any chimney examinations, protective equipment is worn. Safety glasses, face masks, and protective gloves would suffice. With a torch, look up and into the chimney. Where there is a black patch on the chimney wall, take poker and scratch. Grooves that are more than one-quarter of an inch thick mean that you need chimney cleaning service immediately. Grooves that are one-eighth of an inch thick indicate that chimney maintenance service should do a chimney cleaning soon. If the groove on the chimney wall is only paper-thin, then no chimney cleaning needed.
There are different kinds of creosote, each with different ways to remove. The first stage of creosote is the softest layer to remove. It is mostly just soot, either grey, black or brown. Chimney maintenance, cleaning services use a stiff chimney brush for the next stage of creosote when providing chimney cleaning. It is black and grainy. The third type of creosote that must remove chimney maintenance, cleaning services provider is the tar-like substance. Chimney cleaners struggle to remove this tar with regular chimney brushes. Sharp chisel-like tools scrape off the creosote from the chimney. The last and toughest type of creosote is one that is like a glaze. It is shiny and incredibly tricky for chimney maintenance services to remove. While it is possible for the customer to remove the creosote themselves, one must consult with specialist chimney maintenance, cleaning services experts before providing this task.
If an adequate chimney cleaning not provided it seriously increases fire risk, and there are also numerous adverse health risks as well. As advertised by chimney maintenance, cleaning services, one of the most common side effects that occur in these cases is irritated skin. By not wearing proper gloves or other safety equipment, coming into direct contact with creosote can cause intense redness and rashes. Chimney cleaning may be hazardous for the respiratory system. Inhalation of dirt particles from the chimney may cause illnesses such as COPD disease.
The eyes are susceptible. Sensitivity to light is a reaction from exposure to creosote also chemical burns can occur. Recent studies have shown that creosote is carcinogenic and long-term exposure is risky. Therefore, leaving chimney cleaning to professional chimney maintenance, cleaning services is a good idea. Creosote is one of the general causes of fires in chimneys. Creosote is flammable when it reaches a specific temperature. The standard chimney flue is designed only to withstand a particular heat. After a chimney has experienced fire damage, the entire chimney structure weakens. So, any fires or fire hazard issues in the future would cause more harm than before. Any severe damage that occurs in the lining or inside of the chimney indicates that repairs or even replacement needed.
Chimney sweeps are professionals who specialize in chimney cleaning. They are knowledgeable of safety codes and requirements from state to state. These professionals of chimney repair, maintenance services pinpoint any problem areas of the chimney or ventilation. Chimney cleaning professionals advise how to keep chimneys healthy and prevent deterioration. The removal of creosote is the central part of the chimney cleaning services provided by chimney sweeps. There are special tools designed for chimney maintenance, cleaning services for the removal of this toxic substance. Chimney maintenance, cleaning service pros are specially trained to remove these substances with no harm to themselves or homeowners.
There are different products available for purchase that will aid in chimney cleaning. Chimney maintenance services pros often use a special chemical spray. They spray it from the bottom of the flue and up towards the top. It covers all sides of the chimney and loosens the products that have built up. There are also dry mixtures used in chimney cleaning by chimney maintenance services. These dry mixtures contain different combinations of different compounds and elements. These work alike as the spray by loosening the built-up by-products. Chimney maintenance services may advise using special logs that are burned for purposes of chimney cleaning. Those logs aid in loosening the creosote and can prevent future build-ups by maximizing the oxygen combustion within the fire. Maximizing oxygen combustion provides a higher burning temperature that lessens the effect of creosote building up meaning that chimney cleaning services will not be necessary as regularly. If worried about the potentially toxic nature of the chimney cleaning products, there are also natural options available.
Burning very green wood will have adverse effects on the chimney. Greenwood is burning less efficiently making chimney cleaning harder and more frequent. Professional chimney maintenance, cleaning services providers recommend avoiding burning any old furniture items, etc. as those items may contain various chemicals. Chimney cleaning after burning these items must be imperative. The best kinds of wood for burning to avoid chimney cleaning are hardwoods such as Maple, Oak, and Ash. Hardwoods burn longer and hotter, so there is less creosote building up during combustion.
Putting logs on top of one another in a haphazard manner decreases oxygen combustion. Reduced oxygen combustion results in creosote and chimney cleaning. Placing kindling and logs in a crossover pattern will let the airflow around and through them, providing the fire to burn hotter and decreasing the need for professional chimney maintenance, cleaning services.
To remain fire risk the floor and surrounding areas of the fireplace should always stay clean. Usually, chimney maintenance, cleaning services will clean all parts of the flue during the chimney cleaning process. Any smoke that is emanating from the firepot or the chimney is an indication that the chimney most likely needs cleaning. When a fire is burning correctly, there should only be a thin fog of smoke.
Chimney maintenance, repair services can also install a chimney cap when doing chimney cleaning, repairs. A chimney cap keeps animals, birds from entering and prevents the chimney from the rainwater.
Either chimney maintenance and cleaning services may place a carbon monoxide detector to keep an eye on toxicity levels near the fireplace. That device will keep track of how much carbon monoxide exuded and when the indicator reaches a specific level chimney cleaning must be provided.
The chimney sweeps are favorite, for example in the UK that it is considered good luck for a new bride to see one on her wedding day. But for all the popular folklore, is a chimney sweep even needed in today’s electronic world? The answer is a certain “yes,” and you need a good chimney sweeping more often than you realize.
Aside from dancing around and singing with Mary Poppins, what exactly does a chimney sweep do? The art of chimney sweeping was once one of the most hazardous jobs around – and one of the most poorly paid. Small boys were often apprenticed to a chimney sweep to do the actual cleaning and chimney repair services as they were the only ones who could fit inside the narrow, multi-angled chimney to clean it.
Buckingham Palace was even known to have one flue with 15 separate angles and a minute width of nine by nine inches!
Today, however, chimney sweeping, and chimney repair services are performed by certified professionals in a well-regulated industry. At its most elemental, chimney sweeping cleans ash and soot out of your chimney. When fire burns in the fireplace, creosote, a hard, flammable, and toxic coating collect inside the chimney, and this is what your chimney sweep cleans out.
Over the last several decades, the industry has expanded from only wood-burning fires to include many home heating appliances that use natural gas, pellets, and heating oil. Some chimney sweeping organizations can even provide maintenance and repairs on furnaces and space heaters.
The creosote build-up can restrict airflow or catch fire, leading to dangerous house fires. Chimney sweeping removes this build-up. What’s more, burning fossil fuels produces a gas called carbon monoxide. Carbon monoxide is odorless and toxic, and unfortunately, hundreds die every year because of carbon monoxide poisoning from improperly functioning fireplaces and appliances. Regular chimney sweeping ensures that your chimney and flue are clear, ensuring this gas can be channeled outside.
Finally, when you are not using your chimney during the warmer months, birds, critters and other wildlife love the dry, safe confines of a chimney and will make themselves right at home. Nests are highly flammable and need to be removed immediately. On top of their troublesome nests, these furry friends sometimes are eating a hole right through the chimney into your home, creating dangerous conditions that require chimney repair services immediately. A chimney sweep can clear these menaces out before they become a problem.
The NFPA recommends that you should employ the services of a certified chimney sweep, sweeping at least once a year. It will not only ensure better air quality inside your home, but it will also get rid of creosote build-up, reducing the risk of chimney fires and avoid the need for unnecessary chimney repair services.
Chimney Sweep Certification
A chimney sweep can be certified by many organizations like the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA), Certified Chimney Professionals (CCP), and others. A CSIA certification in chimney sweeping is nationally recognized by related industry organizations, insurance companies, government agencies at all levels. The certification aims to confirm the level of expertise a chimney sweep has when evaluating and maintaining chimneys.
CCP offers several levels of chimney sweep certification. A Certified Chimney Professional™ designation acknowledges that the chimney sweep has attained professional knowledge of required codes and industry standards. The CCP also offers chimney repair services certifications, such as a Certified Chimney Re-liner™ and a Certified Master Chimney Technician™. This last certification is for a veteran chimney sweep with at least eight years of experience and who has been certified for six or more years.
When hiring someone to do your chimney sweeping, recommend asking them to provide references as well as checking if there are any unresolved complaints against them. Before hiring, confirm that they will guarantee their work, including any chimney repair services that might be needed. We advise confirming that the chimney sweep, repair service pros that will be onsite at your home carries valid liability insurance and is certified chimney sweep.
Before getting a chimney sweep, sweeping service, be sure to prepare the area to facilitate the work. Remove all furniture, other items from the area so that it is easily accessible. You might want to cover any permanent fixtures to prevent dust build-up.
Chimney sweep, sweeping services are by nature a dirty, dusty process, and proactive measures will protect your house while the chimney sweep does its job. Upon arrival, the first thing a professional chimney sweep will do is place a drop cloth in front of the fireplace for the protection of your home and furniture. Then, a typical chimney sweep will use two primary tools for thorough cleaning. It is usually a long rod with a sturdy brush at the end that has metal bristles coupled with a vacuum. A chimney sweep can also use even a camera to peer inside your chimney and have a first-hand inspection of every inch of your chimney. Additionally, chimney sweeps should wear a protective mask to keep dust out of their eyes and nose while chimney sweeping or completing any chimney repair services.
While a chimney sweep can start from either the top or bottom of your chimney, most chimney sweeping begins at the bottom. It is safer for the chimney sweep, and it also prevents dust and debris clouds.
After a thorough chimney sweeping usually takes about one to two hours, and should include servicing the fireplace itself, the damper, the chimney liner, and the smoke chamber and smoke shelf. After completing the job, your chimney sweep can make recommendations for improving the overall performance of your chimney.
Because of the extreme heat and sparks produced when using your fireplace, it is essential to have your chimney inspected annually to ensure there is no damage hiding in the stack. A chimney sweep should be trained to spot hazards and provide chimney repair services when needed. Essential chimney repair services might include damage to the damper and smoke chamber. A chimney sweep can also insulate and fit the flue to improve efficiency. An expert chimney sweep can also take on more complicated chimney repair services, such as flue repair, rebuilding or repairing crowns, masonry repair, or chimney re-lining
In houses built since the 1940s, chimneys have been constructed using clay tiles as liners. These liners are designed to seal the chimney and ensure that all that heat and sparks your fire produces are channeled outside. However, over time, this clay lining can crack and break due to prolonged exposure to the elements, warranting immediate chimney repair services. If this happens, the chimney sweep will almost certainly advise you to install a new lining. Chimney repair services providers usually install the most popular stainless-steel liner.
If you find that animals have been nesting in your chimney, you can request that your chimney repair service person install a chimney cap. That can not only keep out all those critters but also prevent excess water from getting in your chimney and causing more damage.
Another sign that you need chimney repair services is when the smoke comes inside. Your chimney sweep can tell you if this happens because of poor ventilation resulting from a damaged damper or if your liner is leaking.
Other signs when calling out chimney repair service professionals are necessary is when you see the rust in the fireplace or on the damper, deterioration in the mortar joints at the roofline, small pieces of masonry droppings into the fireplace, and water stains on the wall near the fireplace or chimney.
To help minimize these sometimes-costly chimney repair services, some experts recommend burning citrus or potato peels in your fireplace. The citrus pees are supposed to hinder creosote build-up, and the potato peels dry it out, helping to avoid chimney fires. Industry veterans also recommend that the best time to seek out chimney cleaning and chimney repair services is during the “off-season.” During this time, chimney sweeps have more available.
Fireplaces bring warmth, comfort, and even camaraderie into a home. When properly maintained with regular chimney sweeping and chimney repair services, they can be a joy to have. Find a certified chimney sweep near your location, schedule annual inspections and chimney sweeping services, and your fireplace will bring you years of enjoyment.
A fireplace is a feature that adds character to the home. The chimney stack provides the same for the exterior of a property. Nowadays, they are not seen as particularly environmentally friendly. The pollution control authorities will have plenty to complain about, as will the climate change enthusiasts. But they are still favorite additions to a building and, in many cases, are necessary. In whatever case, if chimney installation and building services are required, it’s important to know what’s involved. A chimney installation is not the sort of thing to cut corners around, for health and safety reasons. Unless there’s someone in the house with the right training and knowledge, chimney installation and building are best to leave to the chimney installation, building pros.
What to look for and what entailed in chimney installation, building services that’s where this article comes in. A customer should go away feeling more confident in knowing each stage of the chimney installation and building service process. The article will also discuss the dangers posed in the event of improper chimney installation, building.
Firstly, it is good to understand every stage that one can expect to find in hiring professional chimney installation and building services. Naturally, this will differ from chimney installation services providers, so customers are advised to do their own, more in-depth research off the back of this article. The below should give a rough idea of a general chimney installation, building process.
One should treat chimney installation and building services like any product sought online. Chimney installation and building services should not be purchased on impulse or without prior research. Scam artists and rogue traders are everywhere, so one should apply a reasonable degree of care, attention, and diligence in searching for the right chimney installation and building services provider.
Rather than giving an in-depth checklist, here are a few brief pointers. Check out their site for a photo gallery of previous chimney installation, building work. It will help a client gather if they can do the sort of work required.
Also, bear in mind their years of experience, but note, that the company chosen possibly not specialize in chimney installation and building services during that time, but instead may be an all-around property development firm. Finally, most importantly, search for proof of any certification, accreditation. It will separate the real chimney installation and building companies from the scams.
CONSULTATION WITH CHIMNEY INSTALLATION SERVICE PROVIDER AND ARCHITECT
If it’s chimney installation and building services that the customer requires, it stands to reason to assume there is not a pre-existing chimney stack on the property. Therefore, consultation with the chimney installer will most probably be necessary. An architect should be on hand as well, to ensure that the customer's plans are feasible.
While telephone, Skype or email communication is always an option, it is advisable to book a face-to-face consultation if possible. Meeting with the chimney installer in person may allow for more explicit illustrations of what the customer wants and defines the chimney installer’s capabilities. In short, it eliminates the possibility of miscommunication.
After the consultation, they should produce a professional, architectural drawing to ensure that the chimney installation provider understood the idea. It is always best to have a precise picture of what must be built.
ON-SITE SURVEY AND INSPECTION
Architectural drawings assure that the property in question reflects the customer’s description and that the plans can be realized. The customers are more likely to be amateurs in the property development world, and their understanding concerning architectural design and the precision involved therein may be insufficient.
Therefore, any wise chimney building, installation provider will send out a representative to inspect the property – whether residential or commercial – and assess that chimney could be installed following the original plan.
If the clients are present during the inspection, so much the better. Once again, this will decrease communication issues between parties, saving any added stress and confusion to the customer in the long run.
While it may vary between chimney installation providers usually following the inspection, the building, installation services company will provide an accurate quote to the customer.
When acquiring chimney building, installation services for old and listed buildings, one should take extra care, attention, and preparation. These properties often come with a lot of character attached, and one should preserve it if possible.
An on-site inspection will be necessary in these cases, but so will attention by an architect. They will be required to assess the condition of the building and ensure that performing any chimney installation and building services will not cause any damage to the property, or not make it unsafe for a living?
Architects and inspectors often don’t recommend modernizing an old property by adding a chimney and fireplace.
The drawings or sketches composed during the consultation stage of the chimney installation and building project, alongside notes and details that were taken down by the inspector when performing the on-site survey, will help towards coming up with the final design.
Chimney building, installation providers, will use an array of different methods to draw this up. Among the most commonly seen ways are CAD systems and sheet metal templates.
Due to their technical experience, any potential issues highlighted in either the briefing, consultation or inspection stages of the chimney building, installation project will have been considered and worked around by the chimney installer.
IF MANUFACTURING INVOLVED
One can expect that the chimney installation and building services selected by the customer will use a variety of tools, machinery, and techniques to make the final product. It even includes using things like plasma profiling or MIG/TIG welding techniques to create chimney accessories.
These accessories range from the first insert and gather or sump adaptors (particularly useful for open fireplaces) to termination sections that have been specially designed by the architect or chimney installation technician. It also includes steel canopies, more frequently found in commercial properties. Depending on the clients’ preferences, these commonly made in conical or scalloped shapes.
It is crucial that the chimney building, installation is carried out correctly the first time.
Poorly installed or maintained flues and chimneys come with a long list of extreme dangers, particularly in a residential property. Using an incorrectly installed chimney poses the severe risk of chimney fires – add that to a carpeted living room, and the results are clear without saying.
Fire is not the only hazard. There are toxic gases as well, which must be ventilated out by the chimney. Otherwise, think of all the poisonous carbon monoxide other chemicals, which could make their way throughout a house.
Luckily, nowadays, chimney installation and building services won’t be able to get away with doing a sub-standard job, even if they wanted to. Health and safety regulations, plus strict building codes have specifications directly concerning chimney installation and building services.
Furthermore, in many countries, there are specialists – “code enforcement agencies” – whose job it is to carry out inspections on newly-built chimneys before they get used in a household or commercial property.
These are usually for the new chimney installations. In the cases of the pre-existing chimney, customers have their own set of worries. If chimney building was carried out long before the strict codes came into play, then there’s a definite higher risk of fire. Therefore, an appropriate survey must be provided by the chimney installation, building services specialist.
When researching chimney installation and building services provider, also check what after-care services they can provide. Customers may get the benefits of having the installation and maintenance services all in one place.
Some chimney installation and building services companies may offer CCTV chimney inspection services, to keep a close eye on any deterioration following fair wear-and-tear. The after-care may also include more straightforward jobs, such as chimney sweeping, or carrying out any re-lining where required.