“We’re not getting our chimney swept this year – we’ve hardly used it.”
It’s a familiar phrase and, on the face of it, it doesn’t sound unreasonable After all, if a fire hasn’t been used much, skipping a year won’t hurt surely?
Actually, nothing could be further from the truth. Here’s why:
1) Sweeping helps prolong the life of your flue
No matter what type of flue you have, they all deteriorate over time. Old brick flues crumble, cracks can appear in clay lined systems and even metal liners will corrode. Even by just having one fire, it will have left soot deposits in the flue. These deposits should be removed to ensure that you get the maximum amount of lifespan out of your flue. By leaving it lingering there, you run the risk of contributing towards early flue failure.
2) Sweeping uncovers blockages you never know you had!
There’s a number of reasons why a flue may become fully or partially blocked. Nesting birds is a common one, but they can also become blocked because of fallen bricks or even large build ups of tar. So when you come to use it, it’s likely the smoke will pour back into the room. Sweeping confirms that the flue passage is clear of obstructions.
3) Sweeping acts as an ‘early warning’ system
When I visit a customer, I always ask what fuel they use and how they burn it. Once I’ve then checked the soot, I will give the customer feedback on whether they need to do or change anything. For instance, as a sweep I can tell when someone is burning at too low a temperature, or they are burning inappropriate fuel. Sweeping also sometimes gives clues as to the condition of the flue, so I can give appropriate advice. In many cases, that advice will stop something more serious happening, such as a chimney fire.
4) Sweeping actually saves you money
A good sweep will give you advice on your flue, appliance and be able to provide you with some valuable, money-saving tips. From stove maintenance to fuel storage, your sweep is a mine of information. And they also clean the flue which means you’re not forking out hundreds for a new liner before it’s absolutely necessary.
5) It gives you an updated Certifcate of Chimney Sweeping for your home insurance
Most Sweeping Certificates are only valid for a specific period of time. So if you have a certificate which ran out in last month or before, it won’t be much use if you, for whatever reason, need one for house insurance purposes now. Registered sweeps can issue official certificates, and having one gives you peace of mind that, should anything untoward happen, you have an up-to-date document to present to your insurers.
Mr Soot Chimney Sweep is a HETAS Approved Sweep, and member of the Guild of Master Chimney Sweeps, offering a professional and friendly chimney sweep and stove service in Wigan, Stockport, St Helens, Ormskirk, Chorley and surrounding areas. Book Mr Soot online or call 0800 0541154.