Chimney Cleaning Tips
Owning a fireplace can add a sense of life and warmth to your home. In order for your fire to run efficiently and safely, it’s important that your chimney stays clean. Keeping a clean chimney will also prevent dangerous chimney fires that could potentially cause you to lose your home. Chimney fires are fires that start with few large sounds resembling gunshots and eventually cause an explosion. The fires can typically not be handled by homeowners. Firefighters often have to shoot water from the top downward, which can cause the house to suffer from flood damage. More often than not, the entire house is lost. One of the most common causes of chimney fires is a poorly maintained chimney. Your chimney should be cleaned once a year, either by you or by a professional (which we recommend.) However, if you have the tools and confidence to do it on your own, SERVPRO of Hermitage/Donelson is here to give you a couple of tips to get you started.
- First, you need to inspect your chimney and begin by removing the creosote, which is soot that has condensed and becomes a toxic substance. Creosote is tar-like, and if the buildup is too high then it can catch on fire. Make sure your fireplace is cooled off before you begin the inspection or any cleaning.
Use a plastic tarp.
- Using a tarp around the front of the fireplace will help protect the floors in your home. This will also make the process of cleaning up more efficient.
Sweep the interior.
- Use a brush to remove creosote buildup inside the chimney. You may need a long attachment to hook to the brush in order to reach the flue and spin the brush. The flue looks like a small metal door near the top of the chimney. Make sure to keep the flue open until you are done cleaning.
Choose a cleaner and brush the interior.
- Use a brush dipped in a soot eraser to brush all inside the chimney and start as high as possible in order to get as much of the debris out as you can.
These are only a few tips in order to get your chimney cleanup started. If you need more assistance or help from a professional, SERVPRO of Hermitage/Donelson is prepared to help you with any chimney maintenance or cleaning you may need. Call us at (615) 885-3906, or request help online!