For a chimney to remain functional, it needs to be maintained from time to time. Professionals as called chimney sweeps are saddled with such responsibility.
However, there are times when it becomes tempting to adopt the DIY strategy for chimney maintenance.
Experience has shown this to be an ineffective plus, there are lots of dangers associated with the DIY approach to chimney cleaning. So, do you want to find out if this approach is worth taking or not?
You’re at the right place! Join us to discover certain facts about chimney cleaning.
Why It’s a Bad Idea to take the DIY Route to Cleaning
Without a doubt, cleaning a chimney improves the performance of fireplaces while also ensuring that toxic combustion gases are properly expelled.
However, the cleaning process isn’t for everyone. There are horrible stories about people getting stuck in chimneys as well as fall off in addition to other chimney-related accidents.
As a novice, you aren’t trained in the performance of chimney sweep tasks.
Such tasks need to be done systematically or in a certain way. Any deviation from laid down guidelines won’t only result in undesirable outcomes but also exposes you to risks.
Some of the reasons to avoid DIY chimney sweep jobs include missing an issue, accidents, Inefficiency due to the absence of tools, as well as difficulty in keeping soot out of your home. What’s more? There’s no room for error.
Let’s further discuss what’s meant by each of these points.
Missing a Problem
Sometimes, underlying issues may be developing in chimneys that can’t be spotted by untrained eyes. It’s important to understand the key functions of chimney sweeps.
Such professionals don’t only clean your chimney and fireplace but also perform repairs within the system.
Before cleaning is performed, inspection is carried out to ascertain the level of dirt as well as potential problems that could later affect performance.
Such problems may include cracked chimney flue, faulty damper as well as problematic flashing.
All these problems and more could be missed by the homeowner that decides to adopt the DIY route to chimney cleaning. Now, missing a problem doesn’t just perpetuate it, but also worsens your chimney’s condition in the long run. This is a situation to be avoided at all costs.
Horrible accidents have been associated with DIY chimney sweep jobs.
Some of the most reported cases include slips and falls. The reasons for such accidents are largely attributed to inexperience, absence of equipment as well as training.
Professional chimney sweeps have all it takes to get the job done. These technicians are well trained and experienced. Plus, they have the necessary safety tools to keep them balanced while they perform the job.
You likely have none of these, thus placing you at an advantage.
A simple misstep can cause you to topple over your roof. This can result in severe injuries. Such stress and risk aren’t worth the try. It’s better to call a professional chimney sweep to handle the task professionally and more efficiently.
Inefficiency due to Inadequate Tooling and Supplies
For chimney cleaning jobs to be effective, the right tools, as well as supplies, will have to be used.
This equipment enhances cleaning efficiency. Some of the most basic tools include a wire chimney brush, chemical and homemade cleaners, smoke chamber brush, power sweeping system, and polypropylene brush.
There are also chimney cleaning agents that come in handy when dealing with tough dirt. They include powder-based creosote remover as well as ceramic glass cleaner. In terms of supplies, some of those needed include a full-face respirator, industrial-grade chimney vacuum system, and canvas drop cloth.
Other supplies include light for chimney sweeps, chimney sweep camera kit, masonry sealant, and industrial-grade chimney vacuum system with multiple stage filters.
Although such tools can be purchased, you may have no experience or knowledge on how to use them.
Plus, it’s easier to contract a professional chimney sweep for such tasks as it saves you the stress of having to get dirty just to have your chimney cleaned.
All of these tools and supplies are used by professional chimney sweeps. There’s little you can do without them. Asides from this, you’re likely to inhale creosote and soot particles which contain chemicals deemed to be carcinogenic.
Without a full-face respirator, you’re at risk of developing health issues.
Difficulty in Keeping Soot Out of your Home
Sometimes, certain chimney cleaning tasks aren’t as easy as they seem.
You’re likely to discover that it’s more challenging to remove soot from your home. A DIY approach to chimney cleaning won’t be worth the stress as soot scrubbed off the inside of your chimney finds its way into your home.
At the end of the day, you may end up calling a cleaning service to clean up your home. This is an added cost you could have avoided by calling a professional chimney sweep.
Zero Tolerance for Error
A chimney sweep job is one with zero tolerance for error.
In other words, some little mistake you make with cleaning your chimney might turn out to become your undoing. There are times when unintentionally leaving out a patch of creosote or soot could result in chimney fires.
Also, some patch of damage or crack along your flue or any area around the chimney masonry can lead to structural defects. What we’re trying to say here is that a chimney DIY sweep approach exposes you as well as your chimney structure to multiple risks.
Training Is of the Essence In Chimney Sweeping
Without training, there’s little you can do to perform a thorough chimney clean.
Professional chimney sweeps are known to be equipped with the right knowledge on safety, proper cleaning techniques, and also fixing chimney-related issues.
While you may assume that performing a chimney cleaning job yourself is an easier way to save cost, such isn’t actually the case. You’re likely to end up spending far more when mistakes cleaning mistakes come back to haunt you.
These are common dangers associated with DIY chimney sweeping. So far, we’ve seen that the job is a delicate one that requires all the necessary training you can get. There’s also the possibility of injury you should avoid.
All of these can be avoided by simply calling a professional chimney sweep.
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