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Clean Sweep Chimney Service

4004 Emerald Drive
St. Charles, MO 63304

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Clean Sweep Chimney Service


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The Importance of Cleaning Your Chimney Before the Season’s First Fire


Your initial thought on the first wintry day of the season may be the pleasure of lighting a toasty fire to cozy up to. There’s nothing wrong with that as long you don’t actually start that first fire without checking off an important step in safety. The fact is that thousands of house fires occur annually because of explosive chimney fires. Lack of chimney maintenance is the most common cause of dangerous chimney fires. If it’s been more than a year since you’ve contacted chimney sweeps about cleaning your chimney or having it inspected, making that call is critical.

Why Cleaning your Chimney is Vital

According to safety experts, chimney cleaning is work that should be left to professionals who have the right equipment. Highly flammable creosote is the primary reason chimney flues need cleaning. With every wood fire, some of the combustion materials that go up the chimney end up clinging to the chimney liner. Creosote begins to build up, layer upon layer, until you hire a chimney technician for the task of cleaning your chimney.

Removing creosote with a chimney sweep brush only works when there is one type of creosote, the easy-to-remove kind. The two other forms of creosote are more difficult to get rid of. The most challenging creosote to remove looks as though tar has been poured down the flue. There are two dangers associated with a chimney that has excess creosote in the chimney lining, and those dangers are chimney fires and exposure to toxic gases.

Why it’s Essential to Prevent Chimney Fires

A dangerous misconception that has long been associated with chimneys is that chimney fires can be helpful because they burn off creosote in the lining. The reality is that chimney fires are extremely dangerous, and their number one cause is creosote buildup. The more creosote there is in the flue, the more likely it is that a hot ember can ignite a chimney fire. As long as there is creosote still to burn in the chimney, the fire continues to build. The following are indications of a raging fire in your chimney:

  • A tremendous noise that passersby and neighbors can hear.
  • Loud popping and cracking sounds.
  • A lot of dense smoke.
  • An intensely hot odor.

Chimney fires can damage chimney linings and spread to become out-of-control house fires. Chimney fires destroy homes and cause injuries and fatalities every year. Cleaning your chimney regularly is the best way to prevent a chimney fire.

Exposure to Toxic Fumes Caused by Dirty Chimneys

The other life-threatening danger caused by chimneys filled with creosote is that chimney obstruction can occur, which causes toxic fumes to go into the home instead of outside. The threat of these toxic gases is the reason a working carbon monoxide detector should already be installed in the home before fires are lit in the fireplace. Carbon monoxide is known as a silent killer because it is odorless, invisible, tasteless, and symptomless. Without a warning from a carbon monoxide detector, people who are exposed usually don’t survive.

Contact the Premier Chimney Safety Experts

If you are ready to contact chimney experts about cleaning your chimney in St. Louis or the surrounding area, contact the experts at Clean Sweep Chimney Service. We are one of the only chimney sweep companies in the nation privileged to receive three industry awards. Our dedication to your safety and to the proper operation of your fireplace and chimney can be attested to by more than 30,000 happy customers. Call us at (636) 477- 9966 if you need to take care of cleaning your chimney or scheduling a chimney inspection before you light the first fire of the season.