Although the weather is still pretty warm and the heating is still off, the tell tale signs that colder weather is on the way are all around us.
Some leaves are starting to fade and even drop, the days are rapidly getting shorter and some mornings the dog walk require a thicker coat. Winter is definitely on the way!
As the colder weather approaches, our mind turns to chilly, rainy, dark days snuggling up in front of the open fire to stay warm and comfortable, but is your fire ready to be used safely? Could you potentially be putting yours and your families life in peril by firing up the logs that have been seasoning since the previous winter? Read on to find out why it is so vital to have your chimney swept regularly and particularly before the winter arrives.
When you light up your fire this coming winter, you really want it to be safe and efficient for the entire winter season. You want it to deliver warmth and enjoyment without the fear of the smoke or other fumes finding their way back into your living space.
The best way to ensure this happens is to book a chimney sweep before you ever need to use your fire. You may find that leaving it until later could mean that many chimney sweeps are too busy to fit you in.
Many good chimney sweeps offer an annual service where they call at regular intervals to service your chimneys and possibly even your stoves and solid fuel burning appliances.
Chimney sweeps often start to get very busy by early September each year. Booking appointments after this time can be hit and miss as it seems like everybody wants their chimney swept just before the winter months are upon us.
Ansell Chimneys offer a service plan to suit all their customers time and budgets for this very reason, so the sensible thing to do would be to get your chimney cleaned in late summer so that it's ready and safe to keep you toasty for another winter.
Chimney sweeping has two main purposes; the first is to remove creosote from the flue; and the second is to remove obstructions from the flue that could prevent toxic fumes and smoke from escaping out of the top of the chimney.
Both of the above points are critical to your chimneys safe and efficient operation.
Creosote is a flammable substance that forms on nearby surfaces when wood fires burn and the closest surface is the inside of your chimney. Creosote can be sticky, flakey, or solid, but whatever form it is in, it can lead to a chimney fire which puts the rest of your home and potentially others at serious risk.
Ansell Chimneys are a certified HETAS installer, so have all the right equipment to safely remove all forms of creosote from the inside of your chimney. We use tools such as rotating brushes, solvents and vacuums to get the job done quickly, safely and professionally.
When you consider that creosote is the cause of most chimney fires each year, it makes sense to get things cleaned up before lighting up this winter. The longer you neglect having any build up in the chimney removed, the more chances of a fire in your chimney. Not all chimney fires are major, but every fire can do damage to internal parts of your chimney.
Another vital part of the chimney sweeps job is to clean out debris that may be causing smoke to draw improperly. Common sources of air flow obstruction include:
These and any other blockages can cause smoke to back up into the house and carry with it deadly carbon monoxide. Flue obstructions also will cause the solid fuel stove or fires to be difficult to start and burn badly when and if they do eventually light.
First we determine what needs to be cdone before cleaning begins. This can include:
We start by ensuring the opening of the fireplace or chimney breast wall is clear and free of obstruction. Next we look for evidence of any faults that can help us diagnose an issue with your chimney such as excessive amounts of debris that are visible in the opening of the fireplace, large deposits of soot and or creosote or evidence of a birds nest falling into the opening are also looked for.
Once the opening is cleaned we then cover and seal the opening of the fireplace with a special sweep cloth to prevent soot and dust escaping during the sweeping process. We then begin the sweeping process using sweep rods, which can reach right up the chimney and are designed for one continuous sweep all the way through the flue from bottom to top. When the sweep is completed we then remove the sheeting to inspect the debris to keep an eye out for any potential problems with your flue. If excessive debris has been produced we then vacuum before removing the sheet to keep your property nice and clean. The whole process takes a relatively short amount of time, but could literally save lives.
So before you reach for the box of matches or the firelighters this winter, make certain that your winter will be warm, snug and above all, safe. Call Ansell Chimneys for an appointment for a hassle free fire this and every winter in the future.
If you would like to know more or are interested in a quote we would be happy to help. Phone us on 01923 661 614, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or fill in our enquiry form and we will be in touch as soon as possible.
t. 01923 661 614 | m. 07941 282 325 | m. 07976 318 160 | Email us
t. 01923 661 614
m. 07941 282 325
m. 07976 318 160
Watford | St Albans | Bushey | Rickmansworth | Bricket Wood | Hemel Hempstead | South Oxhey
Watford | St Albans | Bushey
Rickmansworth | Bricket Wood
Hemel Hempstead | South Oxhey