Keeping the chimney clean is essential for preventing fires in the home. In the 21st century, it is just as important to take the necessary steps to ensure that your home is safe from potential fire hazards. Although many homeowners use their fireplaces for comfort or have remotely controlled natural gas flames, many still use wood to burn and are susceptible to creosote buildup in their dampers and flues. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recommends annual chimney cleaning no matter how often you use it.
Inspecting your chimney for creosote buildup and cleaning it if necessary should be done in the spring of each year. Factory-built chimneys should be swept away when any appreciable buildup occurs. This is because the tank is quite acidic and can corrode the different components of the prefabricated system. According to NFPA Rule 211, “Chimneys, chimneys, and vents shall be inspected at least once a year for strength, absence of deposits, and correct spaces.
Cleaning, maintenance and repairs will be performed if necessary.” Another reason you may want to clean the fireplace is that if you plan to remodel it, you can also remove dirt and grime before renovating it so that you can use it as soon as it is ready. An examination by an experienced chimney sweep is the only way to know if your chimney, whether masonry or metal, needs cleaning. The sweep will go to the roof, check the flashing, the mortar and the entire operation of the chimney, and then clean the chimney from the top of the house. They will then take a wire brush and rub any buildup from the main opening to the chimney.
Unfortunately, cleaning a chimney can be quite dangerous and, if you're not sure what you're doing, it can make things worse. This is why it is important to find a professional, reliable chimney sweep in your area. The company you hire should specialize in repairs and be able to troubleshoot the chimney after cleaning it. By developing a routine for scheduled cleanings with the local chimney sweep, you can minimize major problems.
By having your fireplace cleaned regularly by a professional, you can ensure that your fireplace remains safe and ready for use. There is no simple general rule of thumb for how often the chimney should be cleaned, such as cleaning after 50 uses or a year. However, experts say it's a good idea to inspect and clean your chimney regularly, and there's no better time than fall before winter sets in.