Preparing for a Chimney Sweep

Things to help make the process easier and cleaner.

Clear the mantel and hearth
Although a chimney repair contractor will always look to minimize any mess or damage caused by carrying out a comprehensive chimney repair, help to make their job easier by moving any items from your mantel that could be broken during the job. The same thing goes for the hearth, as debris or fuel that you might be keeping next to the fireplace could obstruct the contractor.

Cover your furnishings
Thankfully, modern chimney inspection methods are infinitely cleaner than their soot-covered predecessors would have been, covering all areas in and around the fireplace with sponge blocks or linen and ‘sweeping’ with an industrial vacuum cleaner to minimize the spread of dust throughout your property.

However, this doesn’t mean that there is no chance of any debris slipping past the contractor and into your living space, covering your furnishings in unsightly grime. With this in mind, covering your furniture and fixtures with a sheet can add the extra layer of protection for the items in your home you would like to keep clean.

Is the roof clear?
If the contractor needs to access the roof, it is essential that it is safe for them to do so. Therefore, if you have anything up there that could be an obstruction, such as footballs or tree branches, look to have them cleared beforehand.

Clean out the fireplace
It can be helpful to spend a little bit of time beforehand cleaning the fireplace of any grime and emptying the grate if fuel and ash has built up. This can help give the contractor a better view of any issues and makes it a bit nicer for them to work.

What does the process entail?
With your fireplace and chimney prepared, you may be wondering what the actual process of chimney sweeping entails. To start with, your contractor will carry out a comprehensive inspection of your stove and flue to ascertain if any repairs are needed and how much creosote has built up inside the flue.

Once the inspection is finished, the cleaning process will begin, with your chosen technician laying out protective sheeting in and around the fireplace. They will then make their way to the roof and clean the chimney from top to bottom, ensuring the damper, chamber and flue are all thoroughly cleared of soot.

A HEPA soot vacuum may also be used to suck up the rest of the dirt, with the HEPA filter ensuring that a minimal level of dust and grime enters your property. This process takes around two hours, meaning your chimney can be running perfectly by the evening.
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