4 Reasons to Get Your Chimney Swept
There are a number of reasons why your chimney or flue should be cleaned on a regular basis:
- Reduce the risk of fire: it clears creosote/soot deposits within the chimney therefore reducing the risk of a chimney fire and allows for proper venting of dangerous combustion gases.
- Building Regulations: when the sweep is inspecting the chimney, they will check that building regulations have been adhered to, for example, flue Vs firebox, distance from combustibles etc.
- Flue Inspection: when the sweep is doing an inspection he will check as much of the flue that is visible (depending on the level of inspection) for cracks and breaches in the flue liner.
- Smoke Chamber Breaches: a sweep will check the smoke chamber for breaches and do a ground-level inspection of the chimney stack. If your chimney fails any part of this level 1 inspection, your sweep may recommend that a higher level of inspection take place that might include smoke testing the chamber or a CCTV survey.
Are chimney fires a common occurrence? In short, the answer is yes. The latest statistics that are available from the Department of Environment, Community and Local Government show that the chimney fires rate (5000 pa) is exceptionally high in Ireland, at a rate of 110 fires/ 100,000 population. It is intended to reduce this figure by 30% to 3500 chimney fires pa, or 75/ 100,000 population by the end of 2015. Chimney Fires account for more than 5000 fire incidents annually. In addition, many local Councils now charge a call-out fee for extinguishing chimney fires. This fee can range from €150 to €500 depending on where you live. So you see it can actually save you money to get your chimneys cleaned regularly as well as making your home safer.
Carbon Monoxide is a colourless, odourless, tasteless gas, produced during the incomplete combustion of carbon-based fuels such as wood, coal, gas and oil. It is harmful if inhaled and may result in death if present in sufficient quantities or if a person is exposed for a sufficient length of time or over a protracted period. We would recommend that all properties having stoves fitted should have a carbon monoxide detector fitted when the stove is been installed. If the alarms sound the best advice is to turn off the appliance in the case of oil or gas and for solid fuel just let it burn through, vacate, ventilate and have a professional investigate the cause of the alarm. When we service a stove we fit a patch detector as part of the service. For more information on Carbon Monoxide click here.
I have a stove but no cleaning access.
No problem, We should be able to sweep up through the baffle plate, if not we can fit an access door in your stove pipe, see the video below as an example.
- Gas- Once a year.
- Oil- Once a year.
- Wood – Once a season, when in use.
- Smoke-less coal- At least once a year.
- Bituminous coal- At least twice a year.
For further information or if you have any questions about how often you should get your chimneys cleaned, please get in touch.