If you've finally moved into a home with your dream fireplace, you can enjoy cool evenings snuggled around a romantic, crackling fire. While a fireplace can bring you a lot of joy and warmth, it can also bring disaster if it isn't maintained properly. One thing you'll want to do is have it cleaned regularly by a chimney cleaning company. Here's a look at what's involved in keeping your chimney clean and hazard free.

Get An Annual Chimney Inspection And Cleaning

Have your chimney inspected before you use it on the first cool night of the season. An inspection ensures the inside of the chimney is free of nests or anything else that could catch fire. Problems with the chimney are also found so they can be repaired if they present a fire hazard. The inspection also reveals if your chimney needs cleaned and if it's being cleaned on the right frequency.

Clean Your Chimney On The Recommended Schedule

Once a year is a good time to have your chimney swept, but it's also possible you'll need to have it done more often than that. The more you use your fireplace, the more creosote will build up in the chimney. Plus, the type of wood you burn matters too. Creosote builds up faster if you use green wood or wood that hasn't had time to dry out and season. To slow down creosote buildup, use clean-burning wood that's been prepared commercially or allow the wood you cut to season before you use it, which could take several months.

Prepare For The Chimney Cleaning Process

Cleaning out a chimney isn't too disruptive to your home since the company uses a vacuum to capture soot and takes steps to control soot from blowing out of the fireplace. Work usually begins at the top and ends in the fireplace. The chimney sweep uses brushes to knock the soot and creosote off the sides of the chimney to reduce the fire hazard they pose. When you have your chimney cleaned regularly, the job goes quicker and easier. When creosote has a chance to build up, it can become difficult to remove.

Have In-Depth Inspections When Needed

The annual chimney inspection you have when your chimney is cleaned checks the readily accessible parts of your chimney for damage and fire hazards. This inspection could be all you need when your fireplace works as it should. If your fireplace is damaged in a storm or you have another reason to think it might be having trouble, a more detailed inspection might be needed. This may involve taking some of the chimney or building materials apart. Your chimney service can guide you to the appropriate level of inspection needed to address your concerns.