We Sweep Chimneys All Throughout Montgomery County
By the time the warm summer breeze is replaced by a chilly wind, and the sounds of giggles and splashing in pools and lakes transform to rustling leaves and pencils on paper, your fireplace begins to look more and more inviting. You long for the quiet evenings and chilly mornings spent in front of a warm and cozy fire with the ones you love.
We love a good home fire as much as (well, probably more than) the next person, which is exactly why we started this company so many years ago. At Mid-Valley Chimney Repair & Sweeps, not only are we chimney fanatics, we’re aficionados – professional, highly trained, and completely certified to service all your chimney and dryer needs.
Before the burning season starts, schedule your annual chimney sweeping with us, so you can rest assured that your chimney will be ready to keep you comfortable and warm all season long. For homeowners in Montgomery County, OH, there is no one better than Mid-Valley. Reach out to schedule with us online or give us a call at 513-727-0994. We’d love to see what we can do for you.
Why Are Chimney Sweepings Important?
Like every other appliance in your home, maintaining a certain level of “cleanliness” in your chimney is crucial to its overall functionality.
But why do we hesitate to claim “clean” as a quality?
Well, this plays into why we prefer to call the service chimney sweeping as opposed to chimney cleaning. The truth is, you can’t ever completely clean a chimney, ever. The nature of the system is for it to come into direct contact with harsh fumes and thick smoke, so, while we do our best to remove all trapped debris, caked-on creosote, and other manifested signs of a well-used fireplace, your chimney/fireplace structure will never be spotless.
This distinction is helpful to remember when conducting your research and looking for general chimney maintenance services – in this industry, cleaning and sweeping are often interchanged and refer to the same service.
So, why is it necessary to have your chimney swept?
- Clean chimneys don’t catch on fire. One of the biggest threats to the well-being of your chimney is creosote, which is a highly combustible substance that forms as you burn wood. And if it ignites, it’ll send flames throughout your entire flue, causing lots of damage in the process. Regardless of how efficient your fires burn, creosote is one thing that is unavoidable, so you’ll need to have it cleared out from time to time.
- Clean chimneys work more efficiently. It’s undeniable that a system free of clogs and buildup will function better. Draft and airflow won’t get caught-up or blocked, you’ll be less likely to experience damages or chimney fires, and you’ll be able to run your system with the ease and reassurance you deserve.
- Clean chimneys prolong the life of your appliance. The cleaner your chimney remains, the better your system will run overall, and the less decay and deterioration you’ll face over time. This will get you more years out of the fireplace, and it will reduce the likelihood of requiring expensive repairs or rebuilds later on, too.
- Clean chimneys give you peace of mind. Fireplaces are meant to offer a cozy and inviting place to relax, unwind, and make lasting memories. But if you’re constantly worrying about how safely or efficiently the system is operating, we’re guessing you won’t get too much enjoyment out of it. Trust our experts to clean and inspect it all, so you don’t have to stress.
How Often Should a Chimney Be Swept?
Ultimately, this depends on a number of factors, but at least once a year. The National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA) in conjunction with the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) requires that every fireplace, chimney, and vent be inspected and swept on a regular, yearly basis to ensure system safety and proficiency.
However, don’t be fooled – this is not the only time your chimney should be swept, this is just the bare minimum. Aside from the type of fuel you burn, how often you use your fireplace, etc., the specific system you have – be it prefabricated or masonry – may also determine the frequency of your chimney sweepings.
For instance, according to the CSIA, you should call a chimney sweep to come brush out your system when you notice around ⅛ inch of creosote buildup in your masonry chimney. For a prefab system, the specifications are a little more vague stating a sweeping is necessary when “any appreciable buildup occurs.” This is because combustion byproducts are quite acidic and can begin to corrode the system from the inside out.
The most important thing here is to simply pay attention and be aware of the overall state of your chimney. Any type of combustion – no matter if it is fueled by wood or by gas – creates harmful byproducts that can contribute to varying degrees of damage and deterioration within your fireplace and chimney itself. Without proper and timely cleanings, your flue liner can accumulate a great deal of creosote and other naturally occurring byproducts that can block or restrict the smoke from exiting your home smoothly. Operating your chimney under these conditions can expose your home and family to a great number of dangers such as chimney fires, carbon monoxide poisoning, and more.
Fortunately, this is largely preventable when you maintain a routine chimney inspection and sweeping schedule. Are you a homeowner living near the Cincinnati or Dayton area looking for a reliable and trustworthy chimney service company? Reach out to Mid-Valley Chimney Repair & Sweeps right here on our website, or call 513-727-0994 to learn more about us, our numerous services, and how we can help you.
What Happens If You Don’t Clean Your Chimney?
Perhaps you don’t mind a little dirt. After all, that’s why you decided to use a traditional fireplace in the first place – to collect your own fuel and feel that much closer to nature. Plus, the sounds and smells of burning wood were too good to pass up. Is it still necessary to have your chimney swept at least once a year?
Unfortunately, even if you prefer the dirt and rawness inherently present in your fireplace/chimney system, it is still 100% necessary – crucial, even – to schedule a sweeping. Neglecting to sweep your chimney will do nothing for your desired organic, natural aesthetic, but will instead subject you and your family to a host of potential dangers. Here is a list of some of the most common threats that can arise as a result of an unswept chimney:
- Creosote Buildup: Byproducts like creosote are a natural result of burning fuel for heat. However, over time, the soot-like, oily material gathers on the inside of the firebox and the flue which can not only restrict the size of the exit, but also increase the risk of fire hazards. Certainly, there are certain precautions you can take such as choosing your wood carefully and ensuring that it is completely dry before burning, but the only way to be completely sure that your chimney is suitable for use and clear of any excessive buildup is to have it swept out by a professional.
- Debris: While there are parts of your system intended to protect against such things, it is only natural – especially over time – that various debris will find its way into your chimney. Whether its leaves, twigs, or other things that have been picked up and carried by the wind, there is always a possibility that random detritus may be found within, and these can cause harmful blockages that send smoke in your home and put your system at risk.
- Animals: Even if you have a properly fitted chimney cap and an appropriately built crown, it is not uncommon for animals to wedge themselves into the tight, dark, nooks and crannies of a chimney. This is especially true at the beginning of the burning season when the chimney has likely not been used in many months or if you rarely (or never) utilize your fireplace. There could be vacated nests, little critters themselves, or lots of excrement, which no one wants to deal with.
- Chimney Fires: Across the board, proper chimney ownership and maintenance requires a certain awareness of the dangers and potential for chimney fires. Creosote is often the main culprit, but it is definitely not the only. Regardless of the specific cause of any given chimney fire, they are almost always caused by a dirty chimney. This also means that they are almost always preventable, too, as long as you’re staying up to date with your service and maintenance responsibilities.
Contact us right here online, or give us a call at 513-727-0994 to schedule your annual chimney sweep service today. Find out why homeowners throughout Southwest Ohio turn to Mid-Valley Chimney Repair & Sweeps every year, for all their venting needs.
What Are the Signs a Chimney Needs Sweeping?
Considering the fact that much of a chimney is out of sight and hidden within your home’s walls, it can often be hard to determine when it is time to give it a good ole sweeping. In general, this is one of the biggest reasons we suggest scheduling your annual chimney inspection and sweeping before every burning season so you don’t have to worry about any hindrances getting in the way of you using your fireplace system all season long.
However, there are still things to keep a lookout for that might signal the need to schedule your annual cleaning service sooner (or more often) than intended. If you notice any of the following, stop using your fireplace until you get someone to come out and give it a professional, thorough cleaning:
- There are strange odors coming from in or around your fireplace. If you don’t remember the last time you lit the system, but are still noticing that it smells of fire and smoke, it is well past time to have your chimney swept!
- There seems to be an issue with downdrafts. You spark the flame and are immediately met with a face full of smoke. It seems that your chimney is not ventilating properly and instead of rising and exiting via the flue, it wafts out into your living space.
- There is excessive soot and creosote buildup. A certain amount of creosote production is to be expected whenever the fireplace system is in use, but if it seems that the fire is producing more soot than is normal and creosote is coating the walls, continuing to operate it without first cleaning the system is dangerous.
- The fireplace is behaving strangely. Maybe the flame went out mere moments after you lit the logs, or perhaps you’re having trouble even creating a flame in the first place. No matter the circumstance, abnormal fireplace behavior is… just that – abnormal. To ensure you are using your chimney in its safest possible state, you must refrain from using it when anything is out of the ordinary.
How else do you know when it’s time to get your chimney swept? You ask the professionals, of course!
If there was a specific time line of chimney care and what comes before another and when, the very first thing you should do before using your fireplace every year is schedule your inspection. During this appointment, you can speak with your chimney technician about your usage habits and get their insight on how often and when to schedule a chimney sweeping service.
Here at Mid-Valley Chimney Repair & Sweeps, we would be happy to help you out with it all. Reach out to learn more by calling 513-727-0994 or request an estimate online today.
What Time of Year Is Best To Clean a Chimney?
We generally tell our customers that it is smartest to get their annual chimney inspection and sweeping services scheduled before the burning season – or before you plan to use your fireplace for the first time every year.
That being said, it’s usually best to schedule your chimney sweeping sometime during the spring and summer months. Plus, as soon as fall rolls in, we tend to get pretty swamped with chimney repairs and other troubleshooting services, making it harder to schedule routine maintenance such as sweeping.
For this reason, it’s best to give us a call and get on our books earlier, rather than later. If you wait for too long, you could end up on a cancellation list, or worse – paying for inferior services from someone else. If you live in Montgomery County, schedule your annual chimney sweeping with Mid-Valley today. Reach out through our website or give us a call at 513-727-0994.
Can I Clean My Chimney By Myself?
So, we can’t technically tell you what to do, but if you’re asking us if we think it’s safe, smart, or easier to do on your own, we’d tell you no.
Chimneys are meant to contain and vent a living, breathing fire inside of your home. As such, they not only come into direct contact with harmful gases and dangerous chemicals simply by nature of existing, but they are also rather complex in their structure. Thus, much of what requires the most cleaning is impossible to reach without the proper equipment and professional training.
We recognize how the times have changed and how anyone can learn to do just about anything thanks to the vast plethora of resources available on the internet – chimney care/maintenance is just not one of those things. To save yourself time, money, and sanity, it’s better to trust the professionals from the start. And when you’re looking for professional service companies serving Southwest Ohio, there’s no one better than Mid-Valley Chimney Repair & Sweeps.
What Can I Burn To Clean My Chimney?
As much as we wish we could give you a specific product or a list of products that would easily, seamlessly clean your chimney flue of creosote, dust, and other debris, no such thing exists. It’s a common misconception (and, admittedly, an excellent marketing ploy), but while creosote sweeping logs may limit the amount of creosote buildup, they do not actually prevent the production of soot and creosote that is inherently present in combustion.
Essentially, these cleaning logs contain minerals meant to reduce the amount of creosote produced when burned, as well as additives that attach to existing creosote accumulated on the walls. So, while they certainly aid chimney sweeps in the process of clearing your chimney flue of creosote buildup, they are not a long-term solution by any means. There is nothing you can burn to actually clean your chimney.
What Is the Best DIY Chimney Cleaner?
Again, we get it.. The internet is quite the useful tool these days. Google makes you a scholar and YouTube, a star. Remember though, while the internet can teach you a whole lot about chimneys and the importance of keeping them well-maintained (and perhaps even a bit about the process of cleaning itself), never trust a DIY solution you find online.
“The best DIY chimney cleaner” is picking up the phone and scheduling your sweeping service with a professional. Trust us, the money you invest in a professional chimney cleaning service will far outweigh that which you’d likely spend in damage or repair fees following an attempted DIY solution.
Is a Chimney Sweep Worth It?
You probably already know our answer to this question, but it is a resounding “yes.”
Chimney sweep technicians are perhaps one of the most underrated home service professionals simply because so many homeowners are not aware of proper chimney care and maintenance. While they may appear simplistic and straightforward, chimneys are intrinsically complicated and require specific, acquired knowledge from someone with experience.
You will 100%, without a doubt, get the most “bang for your buck” when you work with a professional service company like Mid-Valley for all your chimney sweeping, maintenance, and repair needs. Our stellar service is paralleled only by our years of industry experience and our training and certifications with the CSIA, as well as a membership with the National Chimney Sweep Guild (NCSG). Reach out today to learn more about Mid-Valley, our offerings, and how we can help you attain the “cozy home goals” of your dreams.
What Is the Average Cost for a Chimney Sweep?
Honestly, it really depends. A multitude of factors are taken into consideration when our team creates a quote for our chimney sweeping services. Things like history of use, overall state, your home’s location, and your regular maintenance routine all play into the total cost of your service.
Looking for an estimate for your chimney sweeping service? Give us a call at 513-727-0994 or contact us right here through our website to chat with one of our talented technicians. After learning more about your system and visiting your property, we’ll be able to give you a more accurate quote.
How Do I Prepare My Chimney for a Sweep?
- Make sure your system is nice and cool. To be safe, it’s best to stop using your fireplace a day or two before your sweeping service is scheduled.
- Empty your fireplace of logs and any ashes you might want to re-purpose. When we come in to clear it out, we’ll be sure to remove the rest of the ash, but it’s always a huge help to come in to a fireplace free from logs, their holder, the grate, etc.
- Remove any items from your mantel. This will just ensure that your picture frames, knick-knacks, and any other decor is out of the way so it doesn’t get damaged or broken in the cleaning process.
- Move any furniture in the surrounding area. Make sure that your fireplace is easily accessible so that your sweeps have no trouble moving equipment back and forth around the service area.
- Bring pets into another room and steer clear of the area yourself. As much as we love your pets, our job will be much smoother and easier if they’re not right underfoot while we’re working. Plus, for your safety and theirs, it’s better to stay away to protect everyone from any chemical exposure.
We Take Your Safety Seriously
All our technicians at Mid-Valley Chimney Repair & Sweeps are highly certified and excellently trained. We have the knowledge, experience, and state-of-the-art equipment to keep your chimney and fireplace working safer for the long haul.
While we sweep your system, we’ll also keep an eye out for potential threats and anything else that could inhibit peak performance. Then, we can offer recommendations to ensure your fireplace burns safer and cleaner with every passing season.
Give our specialists a call at 513-727-0994 today. Or, if it’s better for you, reach out to us online. We’re here and would be happy to help you out soon.