The Chimney sweep Checklist

Chimney Sweep

180 plus travel fee

  1. Pre/Post Chimney Scope
  2. Chimney Sweep
  3. Examine Joints
  4. Clean Cap
  5. Flashing / Storm Collar Sealed
  6. Chimney Damage/Code Inspection
  7. Cap Inspection
  8. Glass Cleaning / Inspection
  9. Gasket Inspection
  10. Drop Cleaning / Inspection
  11. Baffles Inspection
  12. Ash Removal
  13. Vacuuming
  14. Inspect Firebrink
  15. Inspect Secondary Air Tubes
  16. Inspect Damper/Air Intake Control
  17. Wipe Down Appliance, Stove Pipe, Fronts
  18. Polish (Metals)
  19. Minor Touch Ups (Black Paint Only)
  20. Inspect Wood Pile Moisture Content

Why Should You Sweep Your Chimney

1. Save a tonne of cash

Some money spent on your chimney inspection now, can save you a lot of money down the road. Chimneys and fireplaces are susceptible to many types of damage that often aren’t apparent to homeowners until the problem has dramatically progressed. By this time, repairs can be extremely costly. One of the purposes of an annual inspection is to discover these issues early before dramatic measures are necessary.

Cracks in mortar, deteriorating chimney flashing (which is what seals the chimney and roof) and a broken chimney cap call all allow moisture to seep into the chimney masonry. If these problems are not identified and repaired quickly, this moisture can deterioration the structure of your chimney and even significantly damage your walls, ceilings and floors. Discovering cracks in your flue lining—from moisture, extreme temperatures or the general wear and tear of time—can save your life as well as protect your property from a house fire. These are just a handful of the problems that a professional chimney sweep might discover during an annual inspection.

While none of us love receiving bad news, the price of small repairs like replacing a chimney cap or filing in cracks in mortar are insignificant in contrast to rebuilding your entire chimney or replacing ceilings, walls and floors.

Reason 2

2. Save your lungs from carbon monoxide

Every year, hundreds of people in the U.S. die of carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning and thousands more require emergency medical attention for it. It has become known as the “silent killer” because it is tasteless, odourless and colourless. The symptoms of CO poisoning are not immediately obvious but it is incredible deadly. In the U.S., it is the number one cause of fatalities from poison. One way to reduce the risk of CO poisoning is by having your chimney annually cleaned and inspected to ensure that no blockage, clogging or damage will put your family in danger.

CO is produced when fuels that contain carbon—wood, coal, charcoal, gasoline, natural gas and kerosene—are burnt. A properly functioning chimney will vent this gas outdoors without causing harm to you or your family. If your chimney is not working properly, this deadly gas can collect in your home.

Breathing in CO damages your body by preventing your blood cells from absorbing oxygen. Eventually, this can cause your vital organs to shutdown and die.  Even low levels of CO can cause significant damage to your body. High levels or long periods of exposure can cause lasting problems as well as death.  Children are especially susceptible to heart and brain damage from CO poisoning.

The best way to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning is to take preventative measures. Along with having your fireplace and chimney (or other burning appliance) annually inspected, you should invest in a carbon monoxide detector for each floor of your home. Our professional chimney sweeps are here to help you reduce the risk of carbon monoxide exposure so that you can safely enjoy a crackling fire during the long months of winter.

Reason 3

3. Save your home from a potential fire

In more than 50% of the house fires caused by heating systems, neglecting to have the chimney inspected and cleaned was a leading factor. Every time you burn a fire byproducts of combustion—water vapour, gases, tar fog, wood particles, hydrocarbon, and minerals—are released and move up the chimney. These byproducts condense along the walls creating creosote, a highly combustible substance. Creosote can easily catch on fire from hot embers in smoke or from high temperatures in the flue. If the buildup of creosote is large enough, it can cause a serious chimney fire.

Chimney fires can cause a deadly house fire even if your chimney has a flue liner. Chimney fires can reach up to 2000 degrees Fahrenheit. This intense heat can collapse metal chimney liners, crack ceramic and clay tile liners, melt mortar and cause damage to the exterior of a chimney all of which leave the rest of your home at risk. Pre-existing damage to a chimney liner is equally dangerous allowing even small chimney fires to ignite your home.

The surest way to prevent a chimney fire is to have your chimney regularly inspected and cleaned.

During your annual cleaning and inspection, a certified professional chimney sweep will thoroughly examine your chimney and liner for damage that might lead to a house fire. He/she will also evaluate the level of creosote build up to determine the best way to remove it and will clean it out for you. If the buildup of creosote is extensive, it may be necessary for him/her to use harsh chemicals or replace the flue liner.

Now that you know one inspection can solve three major problems, remembering to schedule your annual inspection this year should be more of a priority. Our certified professional chimney sweeps would love to put their knowledge and experience to work for you.

The chimney system of any wood burning appliance, whether it’s a fireplace, stove, or insert, will develop deposits of soot and creosote that can cause safety and odour issues. Excess creosote can result in a chimney fire that is so intense that it will destroy your chimney. Hiring a chimney sweep, or service technician to perform a thorough inspection and cleaning will ensure that your venting system is working properly. They will check for cracks, leaks, corrosion, and warping that could lead to a carbon monoxide leakage, clean out any creosote buildup or obstructions in the flue. Creosote buildup is extremely flammable and may create an unsafe operating situation if left uncleaned from season to season.