Cleaning and maintaining your chimney is not a do-it-yourself job. If you look closely, you can see signs your chimney needs a professional to take care of it. You could also damage your chimney and fireplace while trying to save money, which could cost you more in the long run. Here are some signs your chimney needs a professional chimney sweep service to maintain it.
If you’re noticing that your fires are consistently smoky or the smoke doesn’t seem to draw well up the chimney, it might be time to call a professional chimney sweep service. The problem could be due to a blockage, poor draft, or a buildup in your chimney that needs removal.
A properly functioning chimney shouldn’t have any strong odors. If you notice a sharp smell coming from your fireplace or chimney, especially when not in use, it could indicate a buildup of creosote or other byproducts of burning logs that must be professionally cleaned out.
Both soot and creosote are byproducts of burning wood, and they are highly sticky and can adhere to the interior of your chimney. If you can see or feel either of these substances in your chimney, it’s time for a cleaning. Creosote, in particular, is highly flammable and can lead to a dangerous chimney fire if not addressed by professional chimney sweeps.
If you find pieces of flue lining or other debris in your fireplace, it strongly indicates that your chimney is deteriorating and needs maintenance. This phenomenon suggests a potential blockage that requires a chimney sweep’s attention.
If your fires are burning poorly or going out quickly, it could be due to an improperly vented or dirty chimney.
A professional should check any cracks in your chimney’s masonry or inner lining or other structural damage like missing mortar. These issues can affect the performance of your chimney and potentially make it unsafe for use.
If you notice birds, squirrels, or other animals in your chimney or hear noises, you likely need a chimney cap or a screen. A professional can safely remove any animals and install these devices to prevent future intrusions.
Even if you don’t notice any specific issues with your chimney, it’s a good idea to have it professionally inspected and cleaned annually. Regular maintenance helps prevent many problems listed above and ensures that your chimney remains safe and efficient.
This substance is always a bad sign. If you notice white discoloration, known as efflorescence, on the exterior of your chimney, it’s a sign that excess moisture has found its way inside the brick and mortar of your chimney.
Efflorescence might mean that your chimney isn’t venting correctly or has cracks or loose bricks somewhere that require professional attention and should be addressed by a professional chimney sweep service.
If it’s been a while since your chimney was inspected or you see signs of an issue, FlameMaster’s CSIA-certified chimney specialist will inspect it to ensure there are no issues with your chimney. Call us at 719-661-3277 or complete our simple contact form. Our staff will gladly discuss your chimney and any potential problems. Don’t wait until your chimney needs to be replaced because of hidden damage; get in touch today.