Chimney sweeping FAQs - by sootyandsweep.co.uk

 

Chimney sweeping is a job that needs carrying out in any home with a regularly used fire place but often it’s a job people know nothing about. Here we will seek to address the three most frequently asked questions when it comes to sweeping chimneys

The most popular question people ask is why do I need to sweep my chimney? Often when people ask this, they are unaware of the dangers of chimneys. When either wood, oil or coal is burnt in your fireplace the resulting combustion pushes smoke into the flue.

This smoke then condenses against the sides of the chimney and forms a layer of creosote. If the creosote builds up to a thickness that is more than 1/8 of an inch then you are at risk of a chimney fire starting every time you light your fire. Equally other foreign materials such as nests and brick can

This smoke then condenses against the sides of the chimney and forms a layer of creosote. If the creosote builds up to a thickness that is more than 1/8 of an inch then you are at risk of a chimney fire starting every time you light your fire. Equally other foreign materials such as nests and brick can overtime fall into the chimney and prevent the safe evacuation of smoke so it is important to have it regularly checked and cleaned.

The second most popular question that comes straight after the realisation that the chimney needs sweeping is, can sweeping the chimney be messy? Often when people think of chimney sweeping they think of soot covered boys in Mary Poppins. However, chimney sweeping has advanced since then so that before starting, the fireplace will be screened off and the chimney is cleaned through this screen. Any small amounts of soot that are left afterwards are easily and quickly cleaned up by a vacuum cleaner leaving virtually no mess.

In terms of how long it takes to clean a chimney, it can vary depending on the state that your chimney is in. The chimney sweep will have to firstly assess the flue to check how much creosote build-up there is and how thick and hard it has condensed. Depending on the thickness, different tools will have to be used for its removal. They will also have to look at how much foreign material needs clearing out such as nest and mortar. If there is a substantial amount of mortar found they will also have to carry out a visual inspection to determine if the flue needs relining to protect the structure. However, in general most chimney sweeping jobs will take around 45 minutes to an hour to complete.