UK fire statistics show that each year on average over 30 thousand houses have chimney fires. This will be largely due to not getting the chimney swept often enough or burning fuel that is inappropriate for the appliance and causing tar to build up in the chimney.
Most insurance companies will no longer pay out for claims made due to chimney fires unless the chimney has been swept by a professional chimney sweep and a valid certificate of sweeping issued that is recognised by insurance companies. If the fire brigade is called out to a chimney fire and it is proven that the chimney has not been properly maintained, then the local council can bill you for the call out, which can be expensive!
Chimney fires can not only destroy homes but also endanger the occupiers of the dwelling.
Slow-burning chimney fires don’t get enough air or have enough fuel to be as dramatic or visible as their more spectacular cousins. The temperatures they reach are very high and can cause damage to the chimney structure and nearby combustible parts of the house. Use only recommended fuels for your appliance and flue type (if you are unsure check your manufactures instructions, ask your stove supplier, or a SweepSafe Chimney Sweep).
Chimneys need to allow the free passage of dangerous combustion gases. 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 help to increase the efficiency of appliances. The frequency of Chimney Sweeping 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 local 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 per year
- Gas: Once per year
Alfred Poppins Chimney Sweep is very mindful and conscious of making as little mess as possible, and is in fact trained in the prevention of dust escaping during sweeping. Normally Chimney Sweeps will need a clear passage to the chimney and adequate space to work in. They 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.
Alfred Poppins is a member of SweepSafe and they are at the forefront of modern sweeping technology with traditional values. Unlike other sweep associations SweepSafe are here to make sure the customer and end user of fires and stoves are kept safe. To be a member of SweepSafe your sweep has to have a minimum of 2yrs trading experience and be passed by its highly qualified assessors.
Alfred Poppins is:
- Fully trained and qualified
- Fully insured
- Issues an Industry Standard Certificate of Chimney Sweeping for every Chimney cleaned
- Follows the Industry Standard Code of Practice
- Able to inspect and survey Chimneys using CCTV equipment.
We are very proud to be a Member of Sweepsafe and if we can’t fit you in for your annual sweep we will happily recommend another fully qualified SweepSafe sweep so that the work is done properly for you.