Get Rid of Dangerous Chimney Creosote & Reduce Chimney Odors The Safe & Easy Way (PCR)
One thing that is certain about our team is that we care about your home and safety! We do what we do, day in and day out. In turn, we are confident that we have improved the performance and maintenance of thousands of chimneys in the Philadelphia area to make them safer, so that fireside experiences are memorable for all the right reasons.
What is Creosote?
Creosote is a flammable and corrosive substance that can build up on the walls of your fireplace and chimney. It forms when unburned wood particles, fly ash, and other volatile gasses combine as they exit the chimney. If there’s a poor draft, these unburned particles and gasses can condense and build upon the walls of your chimney.
Over time, these deposits or soot buildups can become a danger to you and your family. They can potentially result in an unexpected chimney fire.Causes of Chimney Creosote Problems
Burning wood will release pollutants in the form of gasses and particulate matter. Likewise, smoke, or flue gas, is released by the initial fire. It is comprised of steam and vaporized but unburned carbon-based byproducts (vaporized accumulation). If smoke exiting the chimney cools to below 250 degrees Fahrenheit, the gasses liquefy, combine, and solidify to form that tar compound.
A flue too large for the wood-burning appliance may increase the likelihood that creosote will build up. Now, this is our concern. Restricted air supply, unseasoned or rain-logged wood, and cool surface flue temperatures also encourage creosote to build up. Whatever the reason, many homeowners are looking for solutions to remove creosote to ensure the continued safe use of their chimney.
How to Remove Creosote From a Chimney Flue
The process for us to remove the creosote from your chimney depends on the severity of the problem. We can spray PCR directly into your fireplace to break down creosote, for example, which can be then swept out with the help of a chimney sweep brush. However, in some cases, the build-up is so severe that flue brushes are ineffective.
In these instances, we may opt to use spinning wire whips or other chemical solutions to soften the creosote and enable removal with a flue brush. We will use utmost caution, as these more invasive methods have the potential to damage your flue.
My fireplace stinks, especially in the summer. What can I do?
This unpleasant smell is due to creosote deposits in the chimney, which as you now know is a natural byproduct of woodburning. The odor is usually worse in the summer when the humidity is high, and the air conditioner is turned on. A good sweeping will help but usually won't solve the problem completely.
We recommend several commercial chimney deodorants, though even baking soda or litter set in the fireplace have proven good results. The real problem is the air being drawn down the chimney, which is a symptom of overall pressure problems in the house. We recommend that some make-up air be introduced elsewhere in the house. Lastly, a tight sealing, top-mounted damper will also reduce this air flow coming down the chimney.
Need Help Removing Creosote from Your Chimney or Fireplace?
Removing creosote is a messy job and a difficult task for the average homeowner to keep up with. For help with removing creosote from your chimney or fireplace, look no further than the experts at the Chimney Scientists. We recommend regular chimney cleaning at least once a year or more often, depending on how often you use your fireplace.
While the winter season is a busy one for us, early spring may be the best time to schedule a cleaning because you beat our fall rush and reduce the likelihood of smoky odors wafting into your home during the summer, when your fireplace is not in regular use.
Reminder: Schedule Your Onsite Inspection
Our team will thoroughly inspect and write a report onsite, identifying any problems and aspects of your chimney with a video camera (level 2) before issuing any estimates. The process takes about 1-2 hours.
The report includes pictures of your chimney identifying the issues and how to fix them, as well as diagrams and illustrations of the chimney’s composition so that you will get a better understanding of how they work and how they are constructed. For your awareness, this service is $152. We will then credit you back the $152 toward any work that is completed with our company.
We do this to so we can warranty your chimney repairs. Please feel free to reference our reviews to hear of the great successes we've had resolving issues for our clients.