Chimney Testing

Carbon Monoxide Poisoning from Blocked Chimneys

Deaths related to carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning need to be taken into account. The UK is a front runner in such deaths and accidental CO poisoning due to lack of regulations relating to chimneys and appliances that burn fuel.

A growing number of insurance companies are including clauses about real open fires or stoves in the small print of policies. These clauses invalidate the insurance liability if the chimney or flue has not been swept and a chimney fire later on causes damage or a claim is made.

For this reason it is clearly important to use the service of a qualified and registered chimney sweep who will issue a valid certificate which can be presented to the insurance company in the case of a claim for any kind of damage.

Frequently Asked Questions.

Chimneys need to allow the free passage of dangerous combustion gasses. Regular sweeping will remove soot, bird nests, cobwebs and any other blockages. It also removes creosote, which will help to prevent dangerous chimney fires. Chimney Sweeping will also increase the efficiency of some appliances.

Frequency will depend on a number of factors which include the type of fuel used, appliance, duration of use, moisture content of wood fuel, and the type of chimney you have. Your NACS Chimney Sweep will be able to advise on the sweeping frequency during the appointment. The sweeping frequencies below are for guidance purposes only:-

Smokeless fuel: At least once a year

Wood: Quarterly when in use

Bituminous coal: Quarterly when in use

Oil: Once a year

Gas: Once a year

As a NACS Chimney Sweep we've undertaken a rigorous training course and successfully completed a full assessment prior to becoming a NACS Member. We hold valid full insurance for Chimney Sweeping, of which we provide a copy of to the Association on an annual basis. We also have the proper equipment so we are able to undertake the job which is checked at the time of our assessment.

We are very mindful and conscious of making as little mess as possible, and are in fact trained in the prevention of dust escaping during sweeping. However, there are exceptional circumstances e.g. if a chimney may be blocked with a birds nest, which makes it difficult to guaranteed that no mess will be made.

Normally they will need a clear passage to the chimney and adequate space to work in. We may suggest you clear any ornaments from the hearth and mantelpiece, and perhaps you could clear the grate of any fuel, ash or rubbish etc before the sweep arrives.

Yes, although burning these fuels does not normally deposit soot, there are still numerous other problems which can affect chimney function which sweeping can solve or identify. It will also help with the prevention of chimney fires and even carbon monoxide poisoning.

We normally show you this to demonstrate that the flue has been swept throughout its length.

This depends on a number of factors including the type of appliance or chimney you have, the time the job will take to complete properly, and the location within the UK.

Yes, as you may not necessarily know when it was last cleaned properly by a professional Chimney Sweep.

For certain appliances there is a recommended fuel which is the one that should be used. In appliances where there are no such requirements, there are several things that need to be taken into consideration when selecting fuel. Wood that has been properly seasoned is commonly used as it is clean, gives good heat and is carbon neutral.

However, some people prefer using coal as it suits them better. If you are thinking of using coal, then we recommend you use a local approved coal merchant who will have the expert knowledge to guide you.

Please remember that some areas of the UK are smoke free zones, which must also be taken into consideration when selecting fuel.

If a chimney is closed off, it can become damp. If there is soot in your chimney, then this soot can turn into a black acidic slurry that in an old chimney can soak into the internal walls causing severe problems. If the damp gets bad, then it can penetrate through the wall into the room where it will cause unpleasant stains on the walls.

This may be caused by smoke leaking back into the room; call us on 07786 380802 or 01782 460324 to seek our advice as soon as possible.

Call us for the advice. We will be able to advise you on a suitable terminal / guard for your chimney.



Contact Craig on:

07786 380802
01782 460324

NACS Member

In cities like Stoke-on-Trent you may have to burn smokeless fuel in your fireplace or stove, but whatever you burn you need to make sure that your chimney is regularly cleaned by a qualified sweep who can issue a certificate of completion.

Your chimney sweep needs to know about safety issues relating to all kinds of chimneys, fireplaces and flues to give you peace of mind and to protect your family from harmful fumes and safeguard your building from chimney fires.

So it is essential that whoever sweeps your chimney is trained, fully insured and certified by a professional chimney sweep organisation.

Staffordshire Chimney Sweep is NACS Qualified, so you can be assured of an efficient competent service.