Cleaning Fireplace – Safety First

A fireplace can be a wonderful addition to any home it resides in, especially during the colder months of the year. However, having a fireplace does require an extra bit of responsibility in the overall running of your home. While there are certain safety tips for simply avoiding problems, such as keeping any burnable debris away from the area, and putting up a baby gate, there are also steps that need to be taken while cleaning the chimney itself. These steps are not only essential for a successful fireplace cleaning, but for the well being of the household as well.

Firstly, it is of the utmost importance that you have your fireplace inspected at least once a year.  Hire a chimney sweep to check for any blockage, such as a trapped animal or bird’s nest, which will prevent smoke from properly ventilating into the air outside. Doing this will be a big help later on for cleaning fireplace and unwanted surprises that might otherwise come with it.

Cleaning the chimney is not the same as washing your carpet, the windows, and any other part of the house, so do not treat it as such. This is an activity that must not be taken lightly and is not finished in a minute or two. For best results, do your fireplace cleaning after winter and avoid buildup of ash and other particles.

When you’re finally ready to start, one idea is to sprinkle coffee grounds on the ashes. By doing this you will bring down the amount of dust that may fly around when you’re cleaning, which would otherwise lead to more cleaning projects. The first thing you’re going to want to cleanse is the firebox, which is the area that the fire is contained in. Taking a shovel, remove any and all large and small debris you find in the ash. Do not use any kind of water to remove them, as they may turn into a paste-like substance and become a lot more troublesome to remove. When you are finished with shoveling, take a vacuum to suck up anything that might remain.

With that finished, start scrubbing the bricks in the firebox. It is important to note that you shouldn’t use any abrasive cleaners, as a residue may be left behind that will make the bricks flammable. When scrubbing, use a stiff-wire brush, but you could also use a sponge or cloth if you so choose. Take note of how the fireplace looked before you started cleaning, so you’ll know when to stop. Once finished, rinse the area down with warm water, and give yourself a pat on the back for a cleaning fireplace job well done.

Ron Nichols Here... and thanks for reading my Raleigh Chimney Sweep Blog. I am an expert at cleaning a chimney or fireplace.

Only one safe way to use your fireplace or wood stove it too have the chimney inspected every season and to take action should it need a chimney cleaning.

Thanks and have a safe and wonderful day...

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