I took the picture above this morning. It's hard not to be tempted to just light a fire and get cozy when we're cold, and the weather is as frozen as it is outside (though it really is beautiful!)
But the important thing to remember is that safety is the priority.
You can't know whether you have a creosote build-up, or if there's another structural problem unless you have a proper cleaning and inspection conducted. This needs to be done by a professional. Going to a DIY website and viewing some tips on the subject won't get the job done correctly or safely. You could end up with damage to your chimney, fireplace, home or structure in general. Safety hazards greatly increase when you don't have a professional clean your chimney. There are plenty of DIY chimney cleaning tips and tricks out there on the internet, but none of them really explain the dangers in doing that.
First of all, you may not have the proper tools to even clean the chimney. Secondly, without having a professional inspect your chimney, you can't possibly know if there's structural damages, how to fix problems, etc. And last, but certainly not least - it's dangerous. Period.
So here's the bottom line: DON'T do a DIY cleaning job on your chimney; call us instead. We have experienced and practiced technicians to clean and inspect chimneys properly. We can also give you a free estimate for repairs if needed.
Powers Chimney & Masonry, LLC (360) 691-9828