How often should a chimney be swept?

July 6, 2022

"Chimneys, vents, and fireplaces need to be inspected yearly for correct clearances, soundness, and freedom from greasy deposits."

Using your chimney 100 times a year is common, but when exactly it needs to be swept can always be a mystery.

Chimney cleaning is what needs to be done at regular intervals.

Since there is no magical formula associated with the chimney sweeping timings, several measures need to be taken care of and will help you know about the chimney maintenance timelines.

Install a chimney cowl

A chimney cowl is made of stainless steel and helps keep out rain, and birds and can prevent downdraught. Some chimney cowls enhance or increase the draught in your chimney and others can reduce excessive draught.

Let us dig into the guidelines that may help you figure out the timeline of your home's chimney.

How often should the chimney be swept?

As per the Chimney Safety Institute of America, chimney sweeping is recommended at least once per year.

And yes, it is for all the places, including the fireplaces and homes, regardless of the fact that how often these are used.

If we talk solely about the fireplaces, they are not frequently used.

But do you know that it requires the most cleaning?

Why does it require so?

Well, according to Express Chimney Services, the chimney needs to be often swept because of the performance issues that indicate huge chimney problems.

The chimney inspection once a year assures that you will have a chimney with correct clearances and no greasy deposits. However, the maintenance, cleaning, and repairs must be done if required.

Getting the chimney inspected once a year is fine, but are there any signs indicating the essentiality of getting the chimney cleaned immediately?

Well, Yes, below mentioned four signs perfectly indicate that your chimney needs attention!

Signs indicating a chimney cleaning requirement!

Since annual maintenance is recommended for all the chimney users, signs indicate your chimney needs to be swept. This includes:

1. Heavy use of chimneys

The cooking spaces or fireplaces that are often used may require to be swept more than once.

As per the CSIA, chimneys must be swept any time there is 1/8 of an inch of soot accumulation.

This generally happens after the full wood cord has been burnt. And if you are using the chimney more than a full wood cord during each burning season, you must consider the two chimney sweeps.

2. Performance issues

Decreased efficiency, smoking problems, pathetic odors, and many more can indicate the issues with the chimney.

If such is the case with the chimney or fireplace at your home or any other place, you must choose to get the chimney inspection done, followed by a chimney cleaning.

This will help you identify the potential risks associated with the chimneys and enables you to identify and resolve them at the earlier stages.

3. Buying or selling

Whether you are planning to sell the home space or just purchased a new one, ensure to make the "chimney sweeping" an essential part of the process.

Sellers can have the chimney inspected and swept before providing any additional information. This enables them to fix any essential repairs before closing the deals.

And the new homeowners can also get their chimney swept before using it for the first time if the home has been idle for a longer time.

4. Fireplace is inactive

Even if the fireplace hasn't been used for several months or years, cleaning the same can be an excellent way out.

Inactive fireplaces are more susceptible to blockages. Performing the chimney sweeping can eliminate these blockages while enhancing efficiency and reducing the risk of chimney fires.

Why should the chimneys require cleaning?

Chimneys require regular cleaning to

  • Remove soots
  • Eradicate any blockages
  • Clean the firebox
  • Clear some chamber and damper
  • Eliminate the developed creosote from the chimney liners.
  • The chimney sweeping ensures a safer process of the entire chimney throughout the heating.

Do you know?

Creosote glazing’s even small accretion can make your chimneys for potential fires!

Yes! Creosote is highly flammable that develops inside the chimney liners. And the accumulation rate can be higher in case impoverished burning practices are adopted. This can reduce the efficiency of the chimneys.

And to save from it all, a regular chimney inspection and cleaning are required!

Take professional help!

While several appliances may be self-cleaned, fireplaces are something that is difficult to do on your own.

You may find ample DIY tricks online, but it is hard to ensure it is going the right way!

Working with a CSIA-certified sweep professional can ensure that you won't have any potential risks associated with the chimney or fireplace.

Several queries still come to mind while choosing to get the chimney swept services.

Here are a few of them!


What happens if you do not clean the chimney on time?

Several things may turn your mishandling into a severe issue. This may include

The smoke will freely be able to exit the flue, and if it is not clean, the carbon monoxide can build up in the home and cause health issues.

  • It will lead to inconsistent airflow.
  • More pollution will be released into the environment
  • It will lead to creosote development
  • It will make the chimney suspected of potential fire hazards.

How often should I clean my chimney?

A chimney requires regular cleaning. A chimney must be cleaned at least once a year, and the rest depends upon the use of the chimney. Choosing to clean it twice a year or so is better if it is used frequently.

Are chimneys swept professionally?

Yes, you may find ample service providers offering chimney sweep services. However, counting on a reliable one is what you need to figure out.

How much does a chimney sweeping cost?

The cost of chimney sweeping is based on various factors. This may include the type and size of the chimney and many more factors. However, you must choose the service provider that fits well in your budget.

Bottom Line!

Although it is possible to perform several cleaning jobs at home.

But all these can include some lighter ones only.

For successfully removing the creosote build-up or handling any of the issues, taking professional help can always help.

Their understanding of various structures can facilitate identifying the venting issues or deterioration before they become severe hazards.

"Suspect the issues and ensure to have a chimney in the top standards with regular chimney inspections and cleanings."



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