When you hire a chimney sweep to clean your fireplace and chimney, you will want to make sure that they have the proper credentials. They should also carry workman’s compensation insurance in case of an accident.Chimney Sweep

Clean Chimney Sweep Charleston uses a variety of tools to scrub the sides of your chimney and vacuum up creosote. Many start their work from the flue, and others start on the roof.

As smoke, gases, water vapor, and particles of burned wood rise up your chimney and cool, they adhere to the inside walls of the flue and harden into a black, sticky substance called creosote. When enough creosote accumulates, it can prevent your chimney from functioning properly and present a major fire hazard. This dangerous substance cannot be washed away with water or chemicals but can be removed by a professional chimney sweep.

Chimney sweeps are trained to determine what stage of creosote accumulation is present in your chimney. During a cleaning, they use brushes to remove the first-degree creosote deposits. First-degree creosote is powdery and flaky, and it can be easily brushed off your chimney’s flue tiles.

If you skip regular chimney sweepings, the first-degree creosote can quickly harden into a stickier form of the compound that is more difficult to brush off. The second-degree type of creosote is dark, oily, and tarry and can drip like honey. This glazed type of creosote is more easily ignited by hot embers and can be a serious fire hazard for your home.

Chimneys and flue liners are designed to handle certain levels of heat, but creosote-caused chimney fires often cause temperatures that exceed this limit. These temperatures can damage your chimney lining, cause blockages, allow moisture to penetrate into your home, and deteriorate the masonry of your chimney.

Regular chimney sweepings, burning seasoned and well-dried wood, and following good burning habits help you avoid the danger of creosote buildup. If you do have 3rd-degree creosote buildup, expert may be able to remove it with a chemical treatment. However, the process can be dangerous because it can damage clay and ceramic chimney liners.

Carbon Monoxide

Carbon monoxide (CO) is a deadly gas that can poison you without your knowing it. It is odorless, tasteless, and invisible. CO is a byproduct of incomplete combustion, created when fossil fuels such as natural gas, propane, heating oil, coal, wood, gasoline, or kerosene are burned with insufficient air. When you breathe in CO, it attaches to hemoglobin, the oxygen-carrying protein found in your blood cells. It blocks the free flow of oxygen and causes you to suffocate. CO poisoning has been known to cause a wide range of symptoms, including flu-like feelings, headaches, dizziness, nausea, and fatigue. In severe cases, CO poisoning can lead to brain damage, heart failure, and death.

CO can build up in your chimney if it is not cleaned regularly. A dirty chimney is less able to vent smoke and other contaminants outside your home, so they back up through your fireplace and into your living areas. This can be very dangerous for you and your family, especially children and elderly people who may have difficulty breathing.

During a chimney sweep’s visit, they will cover your floors and furnishings with drop cloths to protect them from soot and debris. They will also use a HEPA-rated vacuum for dust control and wire brushes to remove brushable creosote from the chimney flue. If necessary, they will insert a flexible rod through the chimney cap to remove any blockages that may have formed. These obstructions are usually caused by bird’s nests, leaves, and other debris that may have fallen into the chimney.

Once the flammable carbon monoxide has been removed from your chimney, it is ready to be used safely. A professional chimney sweep will also perform a maintenance inspection to ensure that your chimney is in good condition. If they detect any signs of deterioration or improper venting, they can recommend the appropriate repairs to prevent carbon monoxide leaks and other hazards.

Carbon monoxide is a serious danger that can be prevented by hiring a professional chimney sweep for annual cleanings and inspections. It is vitally important to hire a certified sweep who has experience and is licensed and insured. They should also be knowledgeable about building codes, trained to recognize deterioration and venting issues, and able to provide professional advice.


Chimney sweeps use a variety of tools to remove creosote, debris, and other accretions from chimney flue walls and other surfaces. A good sweep will wear protective clothing and use a high-powered HEPA-rated vacuum to keep dust levels down for the safety of the home owner. Drop cloths, floor tarps, and even a mask are sometimes used to protect floors and furniture during cleaning.

During the chimney cleaning process, the sweep may use a rod with a brush attached to it to scrub and scrape the walls of the chimney. In addition, the sweep may have to disassemble a chimney cap or fireplace insert to clean all the parts of the fireplace and chimney, including the smoke chamber, smoke shelf, damper, and firebox. They will also use special brushes to clean the interior of the chimney. If a glazed creosote glaze is present, it will need to be removed with acid-based treatments or other chemical solutions.

A dirty chimney is a fire hazard and can be the source of carbon monoxide poisoning. It can also reduce the efficiency of a fireplace by up to 50 percent. Chimneys should be swept regularly to avoid these hazards.

As a precaution, chimney owners should make sure that they are hiring a CSIA-certified chimney sweep. The CSIA website has a handy locator to help homeowners find sweeps near them. It’s also a good idea to look for reviews and testimonials on the company’s website before you hire them.

Some chimneys require more extensive work than others. Some sweeps will start inside the fireplace and then move outside, while others will begin on the roof and work their way down the chimney. A thorough chimney sweep will also include a visual inspection, which involves checking the chimney cap and lining for damage.

While many people assume that getting your chimney swept is messy, it shouldn’t be if the sweep takes the right precautions. The best chimney sweeps will put down tarps to protect the floor and furniture, wear booties over their shoes, and use a HEPA-rated vacuum to keep dust levels low. They will also carefully remove all ash, creosote, and other materials from the house.


Chimneys and fireplaces add a warm, cozy feeling to homes, but with that comes the responsibility of maintaining them properly. This includes regular chimney cleaning and inspections. Chimney sweeps are trained professionals who understand how important it is to keep your chimney and fireplace functioning properly to avoid safety risks and costly repairs.

If you want to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning, house fires, and other problems related to a dirty chimney, it’s essential to hire a qualified chimney sweep for a professional job. While sweeping and inspecting chimneys, a sweep will look for any issues that may cause problems in the future. They will also provide homeowners with tips to help prevent these issues. For example, they might recommend installing a chimney cap to reduce drafts and prevent debris from entering the chimney.

When a fire burns, it generates creosote that sticks to the chimney walls and flue lining as the smoke rises. Creosote is flammable and can lead to chimney fires. Woodstoves, fireplaces, and chimneys are responsible for causing 50,000 house fires each year. Many of these fires are caused by a lack of chimney maintenance and cleaning.

The first thing a chimney sweep will do is clear the area where they will be working and place a drop cloth on the floor to protect your home and furnishings. They will then use a vacuum system with high-powered, micro-filtered industrial power to clean and remove soot, creosote, and ash. They will then sweep the interior of the chimney and chimney liners, as well as the smoke chamber, firebox, and smoke shelf.

During a sweep, a chimney sweep will also use a ladder to reach the top of your chimney, where they will clean and scrub the flue liner and clean the chimney crown. They will check to see if the chimney crown is in good condition and recommend replacing any damaged or cracked parts. The chimney crown is important because it helps direct the airflow in the fireplace and protects it from rain and other weather conditions.

If you’re thinking about hiring a chimney sweep, find one that is CSIA certified and has insurance and workman’s compensation. You should also ask for references from past clients and read online reviews. It’s a good idea to find a local sweep who is experienced and trustworthy.