Removing and Preventing Chimney Odors
If you own a fireplace and chimney, you know they require constant maintenance and upkeep to ensure the system runs efficiently and safely. There are many problems associated with using a chimney, such as creosote buildup, flue blockages, and water damage. But one problem people rarely think about is chimney odor, why it happens, and how to prevent it.
Let’s look at why your chimney stinks and what you can do about it.
Why Chimneys Smell Bad?
Before we get down to the nitty-gritty of eliminating chimney smells, we have to look at why they happen in the first place. There are a few common culprits to chimney odor, depending on the nature of the smell.
A smoky odor is the most common chimney smell homeowners complain about. What happens is that when you burn wood, creosote forms on the chimney’s interior walls. Now, creosote presents a more severe problem than odor, which is the risk of a chimney fire, which is why you need routine cleaning to remove it. However, eliminating creosote may protect you against fire; it doesn’t always remove the smell because the odor soaks into the chimney’s highly porous masonry materials, making it difficult to eliminate.
Another common source of chimney odor is water. As mentioned, the chimney’s masonry materials are highly porous and absorb moisture. Also, damaged flashing or cracks in the bricks or mortar joints allow water to get into the structure, causing a musty or moldy smell.
Finally, one of the worst odors that can come out of your chimney is when a critter gets in, dies, and decomposes. It’s not uncommon for birds and other nesting animals to find shelter in your chimney, especially if you don’t have a cap to stop them from getting in. Animal odors aren’t limited to decomposition either; even if they survive and move on, they leave behind waste, which creates a foul stench that you have to deal with.
Preventing Chimney Odors
The good news is that you don’t have to suffer from a stinky chimney. One of the best ways to guard against foul chimney smells is by scheduling annual cleaning from a certified chimney sweep. The professionals at Advanced Chimney Sweep thoroughly remove creosote buildup and debris that block your flue to remove foul odors and ensure your chimney functions safely and efficiently.
Another step you can take to protect yourself from a foul-smelling chimney is to have it waterproofed. As we’ve seen, water gets absorbed by bricks and mortar, causing moldy odors and cracks, and other damage that can compromise your chimney’s structural integrity. Our experts have state-of-the-art waterproofing methods to protect your chimney and fireplace against water damage and foul odors. And, if you already have water damage, our team can repair it to prevent it from getting worse.
Finally, you must maintain a healthy draft to keep air and gases moving freely out of your home. This ensures an efficient fire and reduces the chance of developing foul chimney odors. If you sometimes struggle to start or maintain a fire, call the fireplace and chimney experts at Advanced Chimney Sweep to assess your system and ensure you have adequate airflow, so it flows up the chimney instead of back into your home.
About Advanced Chimney Sweep
We’re a local, family-owned, and operated business run by chimney professionals for over 15 years, serving residents throughout Georgia and South Carolina. We’re certified in all areas of chimney repairs, inspection, cleaning, maintenance, and fire prevention. We also offer wood stove and fireplace installation service as well as changeouts and inserts.
Whether you need odor elimination, chimney cleaning, inspection, maintenance, or rebuilding, you can count on us. Call today to book an appointment: In Georgia, call (706) 833-4630. In South Carolina, call (803) 508-3990.