When it comes to chimney cleaning, then there is no one tool that works best, but you will need to use 3 to 4 tools together to completely get your chimney clean and sparkling. However, thoroughly you may scrub, brush, wash, and clean your chimney, you will never get it perfectly clean as some residue will be left behind. For proper cleaning, you will need the workings of an expert chimney sweep, who will have the proper tools and would know the proper way of chimney cleaning.
A chimney is a blessing in the cold wintery nights, providing a warmth and coziness in your home. When the wood burns completely, creosote forms on the interior and exterior of the chimney. Creosote is a tarry substance that goes up with the smoke and soot (also a by-product of burning wood) and forms a film on the inside of the chimney. The creosote is built up over time leading to ventilation problems along with being flammable. This creosote can also cause fire hazards and accidents in your chimney and also in your homes. For this reason, the services of a chimney sweep become necessary and you should also do chimney cleaning yourself regularly.
DIY Ways to Reduce Creosote
- Throw some sodium chloride or table salt in the wood fire when it is burning. The salt and the water in the burning wood creates an acidic substance that travels up the chimney and dissolves some of the creosote. But care should be taken.
- Burn some potato peels along with wood as it tends to soften the creosote buildup.
- Copper sulphate is a common ingredient found in commercial chimney cleaners. The material coats itself on the creosote and soot in the chimney and causes it to burn up slowly.
- Fill a burlap bag full of bricks and drop it down your chimney to remove the creosote buildup.
- These methods maybe used but they will not ensure 100% cleaning of the chimney and you will need to use tools to clean it.
The basic tools that you will need are gloves, ladder, dust mask, mirror, flashlight and rope. These are the basic things as the flashlight is needed for some light inside the chimney so you can see clearly. The best would be a flashlight cap so that you can clean easily and do not have to hold the flashlight in one hand.
The gloves are needed to protect your hands from the dust and the soot. The ladder is needed to climb down or up the chimney depending on the method of cleaning the chimney. A dust mask will help you cover up your nose and face so that harmful materials and substances do not fall directly on your face. A mirror is also needed to look at the insides of the chimney and the corners where there is a creosote buildup.
- You will not need one but a variety of different types of chimney brushes.
- A flat brush with a long rod to clean easily.
- A small brush with an extendable rod to clean the nooks and corners easily.
- Long wire brush with flexibility and hard strength to stay put and clean from small spaces and where there is hard creosote.
- A hand brush to thoroughly clean tight areas such as chimney cap and the smoke chamber.
- Stiff flat wire-bristle brush to scrape the creosote effectively which has been glazed and baked.
When you start with the chimney cleaning process there will be a lot of mess. A vacuum will help in evacuating the dirt and mess and stop it from entering the house. You can get a specialized ash vacuum that is used for the purpose of collecting the ash and dirt from the chimney cleaning.
Shovel and Broom
A shovel and broom will be necessary to clean the dirt and the creosote that has fallen down the chimney on the fireplace and house and will be used to sweep it all away.
A fireplace cover will help in covering the opening of your chimney from the rest of your house.
It is recommended to get your chimney professionally cleaned by a chimney sweep columbia md.
Categories: Home Improvement