How To Prepare Your Chimney For The Winter!
Fall is here! The temperature is mellowing into a more comfortable range, leaves have already started to fall off the trees. Before we all know it winter will be knocking at our doors! So lets get started on talking about cleaning your chimney in anticipation of cooler nights. Some of you might not know this but chimney's need cleaning at least once a year, more often if yours sees more use than average. Fall is a great time to check because you don't want to start a fire for the first time in the winter without performing maintenance. If you are unsure about if your chimney needs sprucing, all you got to do is take a flashlight and look into your chimney. Take a knife and scrape a bit of soot off of the wall, if it is more than 1/8 inches thick then get your gloves on because it's cleaning time!
If this is your first time your fireplace is seeing cleaning materials, be sure to check for nesting animals and critters who may have made a home there!
The next step is to measure the chimney. It's okay to overestimate but try to be as accurate as possible. This can be accomplished by climbing on the roof and measuring down or measuring up through the fireplace. The size and shape of the flue is important to jot down as well. It can be round or square, 6" or 8".
Now it's time to get all your cleaning materials together. Chimney brush, goggles, a broom and dustpan and also the most important thing is a face mask. Cleaning from top down with weighted brush requires up and down motions as you scrape away debris. Cleaning from the bottom up requires a partner on the roof to help scrub with a pulley system. After your chimney is all cleaned, you have to be careful when sweeping and discarding the debris. Now your chimney is ready for winter nights!