When Should I Have my Chimney Cleaned?May 26, 2017
In order to ensure that your chimney is in the best condition, it is important to have it regularly cleaned. This keeps the inside of your home safe from smoke, chemicals, and other contaminants that fire produces, and promotes safe wood-burning during the colder seasons.
Why does my chimney need regular cleaning?
Creosote is a harmful chemical that builds up on the walls of your chimney when wood is burned in your fireplace or wood stove. This build-up of creosote is natural and happens with nearly all chimneys. You need to ensure the creosote in your chimney is regularly cleared out because it is a flammable chemical and can lead to a chimney fire if not taken care of.
When is the best time to have my chimney cleaned?
Once burning season is over and the warmer months approach, you will likely be through with using your fireplace or wood stove for a while. During this off-season is the best time to have your chimney cleaned and inspected. This ensures your chimney will be in perfect condition by the time burning season comes back around. Cleanings and chimney inspections in Maryland should be done at minimum once per year; twice if you use your chimney for a longer period of time.
What does a chimney cleaning include?
A chimney cleaning is much more than sweeping the soot from the base of your fireplace. Professional chimney cleaners will inspect your chimney, firebox, smoke chamber, flue, and exterior for any signs of faults or problem areas. They will remove the creosote from the inside of your chimney to allow for safer wood burning in your home. They will also recommend and perform any repairs that are necessary to keep your fireplace or wood stove in proper working condition.
What can I do to keep my chimney in good condition?
Though it is best to leave chimney cleanings and repairs to the professionals, here are a few things you can do to promote safe use of your wood burning equipment:
- Always sweep up and properly dispose of ashes left from a fire once it has burned out and the ashes have had a decent amount of time to cool down.
- Never start a fire before checking the damper – be sure it is fully open before lighting.
- Burn dry firewood or manufactured logs only – pressure treated, painted, or wet wood is unsafe to burn.
- Place larger logs at the bottom of the fireplace, and add smaller logs in a cross layer on top. Top that with some old newspaper and then about 1 inch of kindling. This top-down burning method promotes hotter, cleaner, and less smoky fires.
Town & Country is a chimney cleaning and service provider in Maryland. We proudly serve Baltimore city, as well as Baltimore, Howard, Carroll, and Anne Arundel counties. For more information on chimney cleaning or to have one of our professionals service your chimney, contact us today!