Safe Chimney Information

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Why You Should Keep Your Chimney Clean...

There are multiple reasons to keep the chimney, flue and appliances clean, free from soot, dust, creosote and debris, which can include bird nest material or chimney particles, ie, mortar and brick pieces.

Any restriction, no matter how small, restricts the flow of smoke and gasses from the residence to the safety of the outside. The restrictions affect the efficiency of the chimney function and therefore the efficiency of the appliance.

The slowing of the evacuation of smoke and gasses from the chimney allows them to cool and transform into the sticky substance known as creosote.  Burning wood, which contains a high moisture level, not only reduces the efficiency of the fire or appliance, but also contributes in the production of creosote forming due to inadequate burning of the fuel. A high moisture content is inefficient because the heat produced in the burning process is used to dry the wood for burning rather than to produce heat for the purpose intended.

Creosote is very volatile and combustible. If allowed, the situation will continue until the chimney area is restricted enough to cause a super heat build up, which can ignite the creosote and therefore can cause a chimney fire.

An efficient  wood burning appliance, an open fireplace or an Inglenook should be cleaned TWICE a year and the same appliance burning coal, at least once a year. 

For a solid fuel cooking appliance, due to the frequency of use, they should be cleaned quarterly.

Keeping the system clear and clean promotes an efficient heat source, a good draught to clear smoke and gasses to the safety of outside, which also reduces any chance of dangerous CO, (carbon monoxide), gasses building inside the property. The day-to-day benefits are the efficient production of heat, the ease of lighting and controlling the appliance and the prevention of soot falls into the appliance or into the fire-place.

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