Remember, when it comes to chimney maintenance, it’s always better to be proactive rather than reactive. Schedule your chimney sweepings regularly, and enjoy the peace of mind that comes with a well-maintained chimney system. The recommended frequency for chimney sweeping can vary depending on the factors mentioned earlier.
Chimney Sweeping: DIY vs. Hiring a Professional
The chimney sweeper will clean the chimney of debris and buildup, as well as perform a visual inspection to spot signs of damage. They will start either inside or up on the roof, or they may approach it from both points. Deeper cleans may involve the use of chemicals to remove creosote buildup. Also, older wood stoves may be more likely to create creosote than new ones. “EPA-certified wood stoves burn more efficiently than older non-certified models, resulting in less creosote buildup in the chimney,” says the EPA.
Other factors—like an abundance of multi-chimney homes in your area—may increase the price. Regardless of where you live, you should make sure your chimney sweep is CSIA-certified . A quick way to tell if your chimney needs cleaning is to run the point of your fireplace poker along the inside of your chimney liner. Chimney flashing sits at the bottom of your chimney stack, where it meets the roofline. It is an important chimney component, protecting your fireplace from rain and water damage. The average cost for repairing chimney flashing is between $225 and $540.
Advised Frequency of Cleaning
If the answer is pretty difficult, meaning your roof has a steep pitch or a high peak, you can expect to pay more for sweep services. Some chimney sweeps may charge more for the extra effort required to service a roof that’s in a dangerous condition or has a difficult-to-reach chimney. It costs about $254 to hire a chimney sweep, but the national average ranges between $129 and $380. If you use your fireplace or woodstove regularly but can’t remember the last time your chimney was cleaned, it’s probably overdue. In many cases, you can clean the chimney yourself and save a few hundred dollars. Read more about Fireplace Cleaning Littleton here. Removal of animals or animal nests from chimneys can require additional costs. The more often you clean your chimney, the less it will need a deep clean.
If your chimney isn’t clean or properly vented, the process falters. Grab your brightest flashlight and a fireplace poker and lean into the firebox.
But the main reason to clean a chimney is to avoid a chimney fire. Chimney fires begin with snaps and pops as loud as gunshots, progressing to a deep rumbling sound. Nikki Elmwood is a fact-checker, editor, and proofreader with over six years of fact-checking experience. Her areas of interest include botany, ornithology, and home improvement. She received a Bachelor of Science from Portland State University. Through overuse, extreme heat, or rust, chimney dampers may need to be replaced instead of repaired. Animals such as raccoons, squirrels, bats, skunks, or possums often make chimneys their home and are difficult to remove.
Cleaning the chimney will avoid chimney and house fires and prevent noxious gases from getting into the home. Regular cleaning can help keep smoke and bad odors from filling the house as well. Heavy creosote deposits render a chimney less efficient, which can result in additional heating costs. Even a small amount of creosote can be enough to start a fire. The chimney sweeping cost will also depend on any additional services.
A masonry chimney with a wood-burning fireplace costs $150 to $375 for an average cleaning. This price applies for a brick or stone chimney with one main flue in a one-story home with easy roof access. The work includes cleaning out the firebox, smoke shelf, and vacuuming up all debris.