Chimney's cleaning & Safety

Fri Oct 31, 2008 4:42 pm

Well its that time of year which I know some of you have used them. I just want to say to be careful with these, If you have a fire place or wood burning stove you need to use seasoned wood.
I hope everyone has checked their flue's for creosote or bird nest or cracks if you can. You also need to have beside the fire places & wood burning store a 5 LB or 10 LB ABC extinguisher. 5 LB is better for the females to handle. If you do a cleaning to your flue's make sure the damper is closed. It does make one heck of a mess. Make sure you know how to work off a ladder or the roof. You can use a brush made for cleaning a flue or use a log chain. It depends on the length of chain reference the height of the flue. If you don't want to tackle this problem call a chimney sweep.If you do get a flue fire get out of the house & call 911. They are the one who have the tall ladders. You can also put the ABC powder if you can get any loose in a thin sandwich bag that locks & put in the stove, fire place. They do have on the market some other sort of other extinguisher stuff I'm not familiar with that stuff. Just be careful don't put combustible to close in the area of the fire place or wood burning stove's.
Enjoy the heat & the season. Just trying to help.
Be Safe Enjoy
Last edited by Jeff Silvey on Mon Nov 03, 2008 7:51 am, edited 1 time in total.

Re: Chimney's cleaning & Safety

Sat Nov 01, 2008 3:15 pm


A timely post :!:

A couple of additional thoughts. I am not sure about south of the 49th, but up here it makes sense to call a professional chimney sweep with a good reputation to clean your chimney at least once per season. Insurance companies like that a lot... and if God forbid, something happens, they can immediately rule out incorrect cleaning as a possible cause/contribution to the incident.

I generally call our local chimney sweep at the beginning of the season.. he is due here on the 14th I think, and then again after the new year when we usually have a few thaws, we call them in again to reclean and make sure that there is no creosote buildup. We also have one specific sweep that we want to clean our chimney. He has been doing it for the most part for the last 21 years with a couple of exceptions. Even though the company warrantees the work, each sweep tends to work differently with different priorities. We were not happy with a couple of replacement sweeps, and the company now only sends the one we request. It pays to build a good relationship with those whom you depend on to maintain your chimney.

Cleaning chimneys is a daunting task and many have gotten hurt whilst doing this, and many of those injuries were preventable from what the stats say. So, if there are any issues that could affect the safety aspect of chimney cleaning, please err on the side of caution and hire a professional to provide the service.

Unfortunately, along with a few other seasonal chores/projects, chimney cleaning is also the theatre of choice for many scam artists. Before you contract with anyone, research them to ensure that they are who they say they are, they have all the required credentials, and any credentialed company will gladly produce the certification simply because you ask. IF the prospective contractor balks... walk.. no RUN very fast away from them. We just had a 3 or 4 week scare with a scam artist posing as a sweep and bilking many customers in the 3 maritime provinces.. PEI, NB and NS...

Re: Chimney's cleaning & Safety

Sun Nov 02, 2008 10:43 pm

i agree excellent timely post for us wood burners. i for sure ,am one who needs to get out the brush and gear prior to lighting up the big fisher this year. gonna get it done as soon as i get back from fishing. 8)

Re: Chimney's cleaning & Safety

Sat Nov 15, 2008 5:52 am

i try to clean mine out three times a season, of course i may not burn as much as someone further north BUT, it only takes one spark.

Re: Chimney's cleaning & Safety

Sat Nov 15, 2008 7:25 am

Good reminder, I clean both of mine a couple of times a year. There were 3 fires in my area this week one was a fatal, all caused by space heaters. It really comes down to the operator not the source, wood ,electric or gas people need to think safety.

Re: Chimney's cleaning & Safety

Sat Oct 24, 2009 6:17 am

Just thought I would bring this back to the top. I know it may be a little late.

Re: Chimney's cleaning & Safety

Sat Oct 24, 2009 12:25 pm

Just cleaned mine this week! Got 3 cords of dry and seasoned wood in the woodshed. We're ready for the season.

Re: Chimney's cleaning & Safety

Sun Oct 25, 2009 7:09 am

Did mine on Friday this week-wow was it full. Burn 3 cords per year but for some reason it was packed from last spring. Good reminder!!

Re: Chimney's cleaning & Safety

Sun Oct 25, 2009 9:22 pm

My chimney is on the outside and was built with a clean out at ground level. The top is a little over shoulder high above the edge of the roof and was always a pain to clean due to the height above the roof. When I started having hip problems and knew climbing a ladder and walking on a roof was going to be a problem, I added a second clean out about 4 feet above the ground. Now I can clean it and never leave the ground, gets cleaned a lot more often that way.

Re: Chimney's cleaning & Safety

Fri Oct 30, 2009 9:44 pm

I did mine also......I have a extinquisher next to the fire place......but I have to say have one handy, but if you have a chimney fire call 911 and get why have one handy.....what is the correct way to use one on a chimney fire....I always pictured standing back like 10 to 15 ft and spray the fire out and move up closer and spray it up the you have any advice...
Robert (want to do it right) Miller

Re: Chimney's cleaning & Safety

Sat Oct 30, 2010 7:57 pm


Re: Chimney's cleaning & Safety

Sun Oct 31, 2010 1:12 pm

Good advice. I clean mine the end of every month so I don't forget. Sometimes it needed it and other times not. Feel better knowing its done monthly. Grump

Re: Chimney's cleaning & Safety

Sun Oct 31, 2010 1:45 pm

I have stainless flue. I have never had a build up. At the clean out I have a little black dust each time I check it. This is since 1985. Always burn as small a hot fire.
During the 8 years we heated the house on Staten Island with wood we had a tile lined outside brick chimney, with a clean out door in the basement. Used a mirror to look up the chimney. Never any build up and again a little black dust in the clean out. Small hot fires do the trick. The home owners policy on SI turned against Wood stoves, so,m it was cheaper to go back to gas.
My friend Mike in Roscoe NY had a massive stone Fire place. It had some sort of problem that we decided to cure with a chimney (cap) a massive piece of local slate supported 5 bricks high. While hoisting the cover in to place I looked down the chimney and found a coating of creosote and other products of combustion at least 1/2 inch thick. It had the consistency of pine gum only drier and harder. I made him build small hot fires for a week in the fire place till we caused all the bad stuff to evaporate. The other chimney that his wood stove was not quite as bad. Only enough to scare the pants off me. He went to small hot fires in that also till it was clear. Mike used to start a fire get it going good and then load it as much as he could and the choke the draft so that he did not over heat the house. Wrong wrong wrong way to do it. So you have to put wood in more often, you will use less over a year with less waste with unburned fumes.
I know every is saying "what would a city guy know about wood". Yet it is not that different from coal that my folks and grand parents used when I was a kid.

Re: Chimney's cleaning & Safety

Sat Oct 15, 2011 7:07 am

TTT I may be early but thats better than late. Good luck.

Re: Chimney's cleaning & Safety

Sat Oct 15, 2011 8:25 am

Just had mine checked and cleaned last week...chimney guy says I build good fires...nice and clean..he did do a side step with a case of dynamite fire starters next to the fireplace LOL
Robert (city boy did good) Miller