Chimney Sweeping & Safety Inspection
Chimney sweeping is vital to the safe operation of your fireplace for several reasons. If you’re interested in learning more about chimney sweeping, it’s important to understand why you should clean your chimney, how often to clean it, and even how to hire the right professional.
Benefits of Chimney Sweeping Services
Chimney sweeping is about much more than simply preserving your chimney’s aesthetic appeal. In fact, it’s necessary to keep you safe. As you burn wood in your fireplace, that wood creates dangerous chemicals called combustion byproducts that can build up inside your chimney over time, including soot and creosote. These byproducts are hazardous for three reasons.
- They are harmful to your health. Creosote and soot are both skin, lung, and eye irritants. This means they can cause discomfort, especially in those who have asthma, allergies, or other existing health conditions.
- Creosote can ignite. Even though it is a combustion byproduct, creosote can ignite when too much of it builds up over time. This can result in catastrophic damage to your home and even personal injury or loss of life.
- Buildup can block airflow. For your chimney to work as it should, the combustion gases and byproducts must be able to escape your home. Creosote and soot can build up and block your chimney completely, which means that those gases and byproducts will enter your home rather than escape it. This can cause carbon monoxide poisoning, which can be fatal.
How Often to Perform Chimney Sweeping
Most professionals who perform chimney cleaning agree that you should have your chimney cleaned at least once per year, or twice per year during particularly cold years when you use your fireplace more often than usual. Some individuals purchase chimney cleaning “logs” that claim to remove the buildup of soot and creosote when they’re used regularly, and while there is evidence to suggest that they can help, it’s important to remember that these products cannot take the place of regular professional chimney sweeping.
Aside from a traditional sweeping, it’s also important to have your chimney inspected annually. North American Chimney includes a 12-point inspection with every sweep at no additional charge!
Choosing a Chimney Sweeping Professional
Hiring a professional chimney sweep is important to insuring that all inspections and any work that is performed adheres to the industry’s highest standards and codes. Always make sure that they are licensed and insured as well as certified by organizations like the National Chimney Sweep Guild. Ask if their technicians are certified chimney sweeps and technicians. Always be sure to check with organizations like Angie’s List that provide actual verified customer reviews.
Chimney sweeping is a vital step in using your home’s fireplace and heating system safely. It can protect your home and your family by ensuring that your chimney allows for proper airflow, that it isn’t blocked by the buildup of byproducts, and that excess creosote and soot is removed before it can start a fire. Contact North American Chimney for more information about our chimney cleaning services.