Sitting by a cozy fireplace gives a sense of comfort unlike any other. However, that serene, calm feeling can quickly be compromised if your fireplace isn’t properly maintained and cleaned; A dirty fireplace is a fire hazard. Keeping your fireplace clean can be a simple and easy DIY task to take on. Follow these simple tips to get the most of your fireplace without worry of a potential disaster occurring.
A Professional Inspection
Before you take on the project yourself, you need to call in a professional. This fireplace professional will inspect the fireplace, the brick around it, and the interior workings to ensure it’s safe and up to code. If they notice bricks or mortar that need to be replaced or other potential hazards they’ll be able to identify and fix them before they cause a larger issue.
Before you begin cleaning, make sure to put on a mask that covers your nose and mouth. This will help to prevent you from breathing in potentially harmful substances that get stirred up into the air as you clean. Next, use a stiff brush to clean the walls of the chimney. As you clean the walls you should have a vacuum running to catch the debris. Creosote can build up on the damper edge as well, so be sure to take the time to scrub and vacuum it after doing the walls.
The outside of your chimney should be checked regularly for signs of wear that need to be repaired. That includes the sealing around the roof which can be prone to water leaks over time. A chimney cap can be installed to prevent animals, leaves, and other debris from entering the fireplace through the top of the chimney. While you’re up there, take the time to trim any trees that are too close to the chimney. They could fall or break and land on the chimney causing costly damage. Finally, you should hire a chimney sweep to clean the portion of the chimney you were unable to reach while cleaning from the inside. Certified chimney sweeps are trained to clean effectively and check for signs of wear during the process. It’s best to schedule these cleaning services once a year at the end of each season. If you notice thick creosote build up throughout the year, an additional servicing may be needed. To avoid creosote buildup you can purchase and burn cleaning logs once every two weeks while the chimney is in use.
Contact New England Hearth & Home
To learn more about keeping your fireplace clean and safe, contact the experts at New England Hearth & Home. We’ll be able to guide you in the right direction and provide repairs or maintenance necessary. Fill out a contact form or give us a call directly at 781-562-0771!