Chimney cleaning is a commonly misunderstood necessity. As a result, many homeowners make costly mistakes, putting both home and family at risk. Chimney safety is important enough that fire safety experts recommend annual chimney inspections. When you avoid making chimney cleaning mistakes, you are safer and, in the long run, you save money. Have you made any of the following common chimney cleaning mistakes?
You may have figured out already that hiring a certified chimney sweep to clean your chimney is essential, but your timing may have been off. The reality is that homeowners typically procrastinate and wait until cold weather is on the doorstep before calling chimney sweeps. This being a popular concept, qualified chimney sweeps’ schedules get very tight and services come at a premium. The best deals for chimney cleaning services are usually available in spring and summer.
Hiring the Wrong Chimney Sweep
The chimney sweep industry is unregulated. Scammers are aware of this and take advantage of homeowners who simply want to cut home maintenance costs. Saving money is smart but cutting corners on an issue as important as chimney safety can be highly dangerous. To avoid spending money for chimney cleaning services and repairs not rendered or for services provided by unqualified individuals, hire a chimney sweep only after doing some research. Check for evidence of longevity in the community, real reviews of customers, and CSIA-certification, which is obtained from the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA).
Making Wrong Assumptions
Many facts get muddled when it comes to the need for chimney sweep services, especially chimney cleaning. One of those facts is that seasoned hardwoods and softwoods create less creosote than burning unseasoned wood. No matter what your wood fuel is, the fires leave creosote deposits every time. Cleaning is needed routinely. Otherwise, the chimney flue can even become obstructed because of layer upon layer of creosote. Chimney fires are much greater risks when the creosote buildup is excessive. In addition, an obstructed chimney is a danger to occupants of the home because toxic gases are unable to escape to the out-of-doors. Deadly carbon monoxide fumes are among the gases released by wood fires.
Trying Ineffective DIY Methods
In the spirit of saving money, countless homeowners try to avoid the costs of chimney cleaning services from qualified chimney sweeps. Those costs, by the way, are reasonable, especially considering the impact on home safety provided by qualified chimney technicians. Among the DIY methods popular with frugal homeowners is to burn creosote logs aka chimney sweep logs. Experts all agree that the logs, bottom line, cannot take the place of chimney cleaning performed by chimney sweeps that have the right equipment for the job.
A homeowner using his own chimney sweep brush is also usually a mistake. First, it is dangerous for anyone to climb on a roof and work from that height. Chimney sweeps have training and experience for that, but that’s only one part of it. A simple chimney sweep brush in the hands of a homeowner will not necessarily clear out the creosote because there are three forms of creosote. Only the easy-to-remove variety will come off with a chimney brush. The other two are far more difficult to remove and require the use of special equipment that only a chimney sweep company would typically own.
Contact Chimney Sweep Experts at Fluesbrothers
At Fluesbrothers Chimney & Fireplace in Kansas City, KS, all of our chimney sweeps are CSIA-certified. We care about your safety. For chimney cleaning services from experienced professionals you can trust and to avoid making common chimney cleaning mistakes, call us at (913) 236-7141 today.