Clean out your chimneys!

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by via media, Sep 1, 2005.

  1. via media

    via media Tub-thumper

    Jun 3, 2005
    It's that time of year again.

    I moved into a house last year and noticed that the fireplace wasn't drawing well. My brother had lived there for a year before me and I thought he had the chimney checked and cleaned before that winter but he hadn't.

    Anyway, the chimney sweep found the problem: A paint tray held down by bricks was in one of the two flues. :confused: Apparently, the previous owner had it blocked off, thinking they were blocking of the flue to the downstairs fireplace.

    All three flues were very very very dirty. I expect to be burning more fires this winter and it'll be especially helpful if the house doesn't fill up with smoke every time. It'll also be a plus if we can avoid a chimney fire. :)

  2. sisterpine

    sisterpine Goshen Farm Supporter

    May 9, 2004
    Zone 8a, AZ
    VM thanks for the reminder! We need to clean our wood stove chimney flue thingy and it is a major pain in the ***! Have to get up on the steep metal roof dismantle the top 12 feet of flue (very heavy triple wall stuff) before we can send the brushes down the remaining 16 feet of flue. I dont know what we will do when DH and I are too old to tackle this job!

  3. Grandmotherbear

    Grandmotherbear Well-Known Member Supporter

    May 14, 2002
    Fl Zones 11
    I read somewhere about an "easy" way to clean a chimney...First make sure the fire is out. Then drop a live chicken down the chimney.... :)
  4. lilyrose

    lilyrose Well-Known Member

    Aug 20, 2005
    Glad you brought this topic up, Via Media!

    Sisterpine, what tools does it take to do the job yourself? (Other than Grandmom's chickens!!) :sing:

    It seems there have to be safer ways to do this. We've got a slope so I don't know how we're going to do it safely at all. All it takes is one slip and it's not good.
  5. Cabin Fever

    Cabin Fever Life NRA Member since 1976 Supporter

    May 10, 2002
    Between Crosslake and Emily Minnesota
    If you can get at it, you can always clean the chimeny pipe from the bottom. Just disconnect the stove pipe from the chimney pipe. Then, make a small hole in the bottom of a gunny sack or large plastic bag. Slide your brush pole into this small hole. Then place the large open end of the bag around the chimney pipe and tape it there. Start sliding your pole and brush up the chimney. The gunk you knock loose should fall into the bag.
  6. bluetick

    bluetick Well-Known Member

    May 10, 2002
    southern CA
    I have an appointment for the chimney sweep to come next week!

    Years ago, I bought a house that had a fireplace. It was my first experience with one, and I looked forward to trying it out. Something told me to get it cleaned and inspected first. Whew! Smart move! The guy fished out a few years' worth of pigeon nests and pigeon skeletons! He said the mess was about 3 feet deep in the top of the chimney.
  7. Mel-

    Mel- Well-Known Member

    Mar 30, 2004
    anyone have an idea of what on average it costs to have a chimney cleaned out?

    also, I live in a house that's about 150 years old (with a 150 year old chimney). what would be necessary for me to use it? would the person who cleans it be able to tell me if it is safe to use or not? it hasn't been used in at least 20 years. I've currently got insulation stuffed up it and the front boarded up. am thinking of getting a wood stove insert or maybe a ventless gas (which I suppose means it doesn't need the chimeny anyway).

    thanks all.