Posted by & filed under Chimney Service Blog.

Daniel Hodgson

 

Why Smoke Testing is not optional

After reading some of The competitions chimney sweep advertising it is apparent that many of them offer Smoke draw testing only an optional extra, Dangerous? Read on below. At clean Sweep Chimney Services of we have developed our process over several generations and we believe an imperative part of that sweeping process is the simple type two  Smoke test.
The smoke test is simple and easy to deliver, it basically entails one or more smoke generating pellets to be place within the burning grate area of your fireplace or stove, closing all windows and doors serving the room, igniting, said pellet then skill fully watching the smoke ensuring there is no unacceptable spillage then quickly moving outside with the binoculars to ensure the smoke is freely issuing from only one chimney terminal.
It is the opinion of our company that not undertaking this test could leave the consumer with a false sense of security and potentially lead to carbon monoxide poisoning.Guessing that the draught of a chimney or using the back of the had to magically feel the flow is woefully inadequate.
It is also likely that any certificate you may have received in the last that does not include this test is not the accepted Guild of Master Chimney Sweeps industry standard certificate and with the exclusion of this essential information it may not be accepted by some insurance companies.
The above pictures demonstrate how simply the process is so why not do it?
If your chimney sweep has missed out this vital test then you know it’s time for a change. You can find the information on the certificate that you have been issued, if it’s not there or you don’t have a certificate give us a call at your earliest convenience.

 

Chimney sweep danny hodgson

Posted by & filed under Chimney Service Blog.

Sweeping your chimney is a vital service to insure the health and safety of your family and home.In the absence of chimney sweep, the backup of poisonous exhaust gas into your home is an severe safety and health hazard as a result of damaged chimneys. Having a professional inspect and clean your chimney in a thorough way is essential for health and safety reasons.

Keeping your home in the best condition is not an easy task. You have to dedicate your time and savings to keep your home attractive and valuable. You need to pay attention all the time to your fireplace and ensure the chimney system is in the best condition. Days are gone when accessing chimney services was a challenge. It is easy nowadays to seek the services of a chimney sweep any time in need. Chimneys are built to channel out dangerous gases to the atmosphere and should be in the best condition always. If you suspect that your chimney is not in the best condition, ensure you seek the best chimney cleaning assistance in the market.

Why Your Chimney Needs Cleaning

From time to time, you have to take care of your chimney. The demand for chimney sweep services has increased tremendously with advent of diverse home designs. However, as you seek chimney cleaning services, it is wise to figure out why you need to pay attention to your chimney. Don’t just assume that your fireplace needs servicing. Keep in mind there are many challenges you are likely to face if your chimney is not in the best condition.

Chimneys easily get clogged with soot when you burn wood and this creosote can easily damage your chimney or cause chimney problems. This creosote is flammable and can cause chimney fires that are destructive. A chimney with poor masonry will also leak dangerous gases that are harmful to anyone inside the house. Chimney repairs should at all times be undertaken by experts.  A qualified chimney sweep will be able to clean any soot that has built up in smoke chamber, in your firebox, on the damper as well as on the inside of your chimney. Thus, you have to ensure you are dealing with an expert and a certified chimney sweep service provider.

What Chimney Cleaning is all about?

It is advisable to clean and inspect your chimney regularly. If you cannot do it yourself, it is the high time you make use of chimney sweeps. A chimney sweep is well trained and understands the kind of chimney sweep services you need. The chimney cleaning expert that you opt for will use the right tools for the task as well as undertake the entire cleaning process professionally. These tools include protective goggle, dust mask and chimney brush. A qualified chimney sweep will not only check the firebox for damaged brick and missing mortar but also open the damper completely and check flue liners.

Many homeowners hesitate to seek chimney sweep services because they don’t know how much they need for the task. Depending on where you are seeking chimney repair services from, there is a standard chimney cleaning and inspection cost. These cost is set for all clients and will perfectly fit into your budget. Also, the cost of chimney repairs will vary depending on roof accessibility and the type of chimney installed in your home.

A reputed chimney sweep will guarantee quality work and ensure your money is rightfully put into work. Always go for a chimney service provider who offers a lifetime warranty for all new chimney materials installed. Take action today and have your chimney cleaned and inspected by experts.

Clean Sweep offering chimney sweep London services is a family run chimney sweeping and testing company that was initially established in 1964

Posted by & filed under Chimney Service Blog.

Fire and Rescue Services across the UK are calling on people to get their chimneys swept. They have issued a fresh appeal to warn people of the dangers of chimney fires, following a recent rise in incidents across the many counties as the winter nights continue to bite.

Chimney Service London

 

As John Barke, deputy community fire safety manager at Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue said –

“With temperatures dropping and more people relying on fires to heat their homes, it’s important that people take the time to follow our advice. Please get your chimney swept to avoid putting your life or those around you in danger.”

The fireplace is one of the most important parts of your home. It is the heart of your home as it is the best place to spend quality time with your family and guests. And so, you should keep it in the best condition always and understand the risks of poorly maintained chimney. If you find it taxing to sweep and clean your fireplace, seek services of a chimney sweep. You have to choose reliable chimney sweeps who will also treat your home with respect. Go for a professional who will guarantee quality services and an individual who is certified by the chimney sweep association.

A lot of responsibility and care should be undertaken to keep the stove, connecting flue pipes and chimney in the best of conditions. No homeowner should see a chimney as a low maintenance feature. You should spare your quality time and small amount of your savings and clean your chimney on annual or even bi-annual basis. There are many chimney problems that will force you to seek professional chimney services, This should be done  immediately even if you are reluctant to do so. Your chimney may be dirty,blocked,  closed damper, not built to proper dimensions or your house is built near a hill or canyon. If you suspect such chimney problems, it is the high time to seek help from professional chimney sweeps.

If you need chimney sweep services, you should not have any reservations. There is always a reputed chimney sweep association willing to provide you with the best chimney cleaners. Also, the number of chimney sweep UK has also increased rapidly and you will easily find a qualified chimney sweep for your home. Don’t fall for online scams. Check the credentials of the chimney sweep service provider you choose. Ensure that the chimney cleaner you choose is a professional and has undergone  extensive chimney sweep training.

One top reasons as to why you need to seek chimney sweep services in UK is to prevent chimney fires. A chimney fire can be huge and cause unbearable damage to your home. Flames from the chimney can quickly spread and reach any other flammable thing in the house leading to massive destruction. A dirty chimney can easily cause chimney fires and so you need a certified chimney sweep to solve such problems before they turn into a disaster.

You need clean sweep chimney Services  to protect your loved ones from dangerous gases produced during solid fuel combustion. Carbon monoxide poisoning is one of the common cause accidental deaths in many homes. Many times when your leave your chimney uncleaned and dirty, creosote will accumulate and release dangerous fumes when burnt. These gases are dangerous can be quite fatal as well as cause nausea, headaches, dizziness, fatigue and fainting.

You need chimney sweep London services chimbey experts to prevent  smoke damage to your home. When you don’t regularly inspect or clean your chimney, soot will accumulate around the flue and possibly enter your room. Falling soot can damage furniture and decorations and cause unbearable damage.

Why let your loved ones suffer when chimney sweep services are easy to get these day? The advent of internet has made it easy to access chimney cleaning services. However, you have to make sure you are dealing with the best providers in the competitive market. Find chimney sweeps who will treat your house like their own house and have the flue clean regularly.

tar-removal

Posted by & filed under Uncategorized.

It is a fact that burning wood with a high moisture content and long periods of slumbering produce high levels of un-burnt hydrocarbons that deposit within the chimney as tar or creosote.
This product is quite likely to cause a chimney fire if it is not removed however it is impossible to remove glazed creosote in most cases with abrasion based cleaning methods without also damaging the chimney.
The solution is to use a chemical cleaner or modifier to either liquefy or change the creosote tar into a product that can be cleaned.
It is my experience that the liquid method of tar removal is extremely messy using sprayed on sodium hydroxide solution which in turn runs down the flue to the fireplace and hearth.
The solution we use at clean sweep chimney services is the Cre-Away pro method dry powder application creosote modifier. This product uses a magnesium catalyst to transform wet or glazed tar into something that resembles expanded black honey comb which can be swept away using a rotary flail or stiff brushes.
It also contains a fire suppressant which helps reduce the risk of a chimney fire while it does its work.

Cre away pro professional creosote modifier

learn the process below

  1. Protect the working area, clear furniture and lay sheets, cloths and other protective measures
  2.  Clean The Chimney thoroughly using traditional or rotary methods
  3. Warm the chimney up using an electric heater
  4. prepare the cre away, charge a compressor and attach the grit blasting attachment
  5. Dont forget your personal protective equipment mask especially
  6. Close access to the room, closing doors and windows
  7. Place the hose from the grit blasting attachment in the bucket of stirred cre_away pro and now you can direct the nozzle up the chimney and pull the trigger in measured bursts not one stream. It is best to have the heater running through application.
  8. Check with a torch and mirror to see if there s enough coverage, check the chimney top too if you have safe access.
  9. Continue to apply product until the entire chimney is coated and you cannot see the creosote through the creaway.
  10. clean the site and instruct the customer to use the heater in the chimney for around two hours per day for six weeks. Demonstrate position etc use an rcd.
  11. Six weeks later return to the site, resweep the chimney using rotary methods to remove the expanded modified creosote.
  12. Check condidion of flue if tar us still present go back to 3. And repeat the process.

More information on creosote removal can be found here chimney Services tar removal

thank you for reading our post

If you found it useful please be so kind as to like and share

kindest regards

Daniel Hodgson

Master Chimney sweep

Posted by & filed under Uncategorized.

There have been many changes in recent years in the chimney sweeping industry. Historically chimney sweeps have been completely unregulated and the customer has been playing roulette with their choice of a sweep.

Recently a person died form carbon monoxide poisoning after commissioning a cowboy chimney sweep to sweep their chimney. He followed no protocol that would be accepted, did not perform a smoke evacuation test and did not complete vital safety checks.

In an attempt to safeguard the consumer and raise professional standards Sweep Safe was formed. Members of the organisation have to pass a minimum experience criteria and an extensive  onsite assessment along with a myriad of checks.

This Standard set out by Sweepsafe also ensures that vital checks including those for smoke evacuation, ventilation and fire safety are carried out. Furthermore the standard sets a minimum requirement on re-training and basic equipment. This standard also ensures that potentially dangerous appliances and chimneys are condemned with a warning notice and a warning label attached.

An approved sweeping certificate must be issued following each sweep

So in short if you want a chimney sweep who you know meets this standard please do not be afraid to ask them if the are a member of Sweep Safe

 

look for the logo-get the certificate.

Posted by & filed under Chimney Service Blog.

The roll of the proffesional chimney sweep has changed today from that of a victorian Chimney cleaner to a Chimney engineer who can service and design complex Biomass systems, prevent house fires through advice and inform.
Below is the definition of the work a Professional chimney sweep may undertake
A professional chimney sweep:
…Informs
About the requirements and regulations for the appliance, connecting flue pipe, ventilation and chimney, the correct use of the appliance and what fuel to burn And much more.

…Tests
The integrity of the chimney and the correct installation of the appliance, ventilation, connecting flue pipe and chimney. Clean sweep chimney services are expert in testing chimneys for leakage using a machine like the one pictured below.

… Cleans
The appliance, connecting fluepipe and chimney to reduce the risk of chimney fire and poisoning from C0 and to ensure a trouble free operation.

Click the chimney sweeping  video here.   IMG_1706

…Services
The solid fuel appliance to achieve and maintain the best possible combustion as to remain as environmentally friendly as possible and to get the best heat output with the lowest investment.

… Measures
The efficiency, heat loss and emissions of the appliance and in addition the moisture content of Biomass fuels to secure an environmentally-friendly and safe operation

biomass

…Advises
About possible thermal building improvements as well as various improvement techniques for chimneys appliances, fuel and heating systems

Posted by & filed under Chimney Service Blog.

I started this thread because price is a very important factor to many customers.

There are many So called ” Cheap Sweeps” advertised on the internet and at first glance they may seem like a bargain. I would warn buyer beware and I will state some reasons why below:

1, A good Chimney sweep will have had many years experience and will have undertaken very many training courses which are expensive.

2, Business insurance carries an expense if your house is damaged or someone is hurt who will pay?

3, Propper chimney sweeping equipment is very expensive. For example a H rated chimney sweeping vaccuum will cost close to £900.00 it is absolutley essential as the VOC`s in soot are carcinogenic. There is also value attached to new dust sheets, brushes that actually sweep etc. A Henry hoover is NOT a sweeps vac and there is no such thing as a Vaccuum only method of sweeping.

4, An untrained or poorley trained chimney sweep will not unterstand the risks associated with carbon monoxide which is produced in abundence in solid fuelled appliances. (35% of all deaths from CO are now the fault of solid fuel)

5, There are only 2 official chimney sweeping organisations signed up to the Chimney sweeping industry standard. The Guild of Master Chimney Sweeps and the NACS. Is the sweep a member of these?

6, There are a massive difference between a chimney cleaner and a professional chimney sweep. It is possible that your average chimney cleaner may or may not have attended a 1 and 1/2 day `Chimney sweeping course` but a chimney engineer or professioonal chimney sweep will have been studying for several years. For example a master member of the guild of Master Chimney Sweeps will have around 8 to 12 weeks of classroom time and a minimum of 2 years in the chimney sweeping industry. He will also be a HETAS registered installer and possibly have undertaken the H005 Biomass qualification as is the case with Clean Sweep Chimney Services. Do you really want someone with with absolutley no understanding of how your stove works or fits together taking it apart? or maybe even your very very delicate Biomass boiler and blindly ramming brushes through it?

7, Will the brand new company that you wish to employ be around when something goes wrong? Old companies have a proven track record.

8, Will the soot be disposed of or will this Carcinogenic (Cancer forming) product be left with you or dumped in your wheelie bin? A waste carriage licence is required to transport soot.

I could rant on all day but thats not the point.
The point is can a person skillfully sweep your chimney with very little or no mess? can they give professional advice on safety,burning cycle, installation faults ,fuel type and leave you with a legal industry standard certificate? does the appliance now work more efficiently? and most importantly are you left feeling safe in your home from CO poisoning and the risk of chimney fire? Has the carcinogenic soot been taken away and disposed of? If so then you have probably received good value for money what ever you have paid.

So in summary: It is always surprising to me that price is still the number 1 factor to some people even though the reason for sweeping the chimney is to prevent a chimney/house fire and to prevent carbon monoxide incidences even possible death. It is reccomended to choose the most respected, trained and competent chimney sweeps unfortunatly they will not be able to compete with the “Cheap Sweep” but rest assured you will have made the right choice for you and your family and typically the difference is only a few pounds.

Yours Faithfully
Daniel Hodgson
Owner Clean sweep chimney service

Posted by & filed under Chimney Service Blog.

I would like to introduce my self, my name is Daniel Hodgson and I am the owner of Clean Sweep Chimney Services.

It was in the 1950`s that my grandfather decided to become a chimney sweep. He was working in a coal mine just out side of Newcastle on a particularly cold November morning when he bumped into the village sweep. My grandfather noticed that he was bitterly cold and blackened from head to foot while the Chimney Sweep was fairly clean by comparison and was swigging a hot tea and indulging in a bacon sandwich.  After a brief conversation The Sweep agreed to teach my grand father the trade.

It was in 1954 when the decision was taken to move the business to London . Later that year my father began his training,  by 1960 he was running the company and It was during 1964 that `Clean Sweep Chimney Services` was officially formed.  It was not until 1990 when I began to train as a Sweep and in 1992 My father retired from sweeping and I took over the reigns. The first thing I did was to buy the biggest vacuum that I could find.  My father did use a vacuum, although it was something from the 1970`s and did very little to control the dust.

In 1995 My Wife Sarah took over the running of our offices and most recently My eldest son qualified as a Guild chimney sweep and joined our company.

From 1992 I decided that I wanted to improve both myself and the chimney sweeping industry. I began to undertake every training course I could find which appertained to the Industry. I started with ACOPS for gas later both myself and my brothers became HETAS registered later on I retrained in muhlbach in Germany to further my chimney sweeping knowledge. We now have qualifications in, pressure testing, working at heights, camera surveying, chimney relining, appliance installation, installation of steel chimney systems, renewable technologies, pellet systems  and the installation of wet solid fuel heating systems.

Hetas registered engineer logo

The HETAS registered installer logo

By 2006 my company was highly qualified in the solid fuel sector but lacked the ability to certify our chimney sweeping work. After lots of searching we discovered that there were two sweeping organisations in the UK that could offer industry approved certification. The Guild of Master Chimney Sweeps and The NACS, after some deliberation I decided that the Guild was the right choice for Clean Sweep and later that year I was assessed and admitted to join. By 2007 it was noticed by the Guild board that I had a vast industry knowledge and was voted into the position of education director. This position carried much responsibility as it involved writing the new training manual and training new sweeps. The manual I co-wrote `Masterful Sweeping` is still used today and was a great achievement. I would like to thank the chimney sweeping institute of America for their help and also Mr Lawson Wight.

In 2009 the past Chairman of the Guild  Mr Russell stepped down and I was elected as Chairman. This is a position that I am proud to say that I still hold today. My new role involves general day to day running of the Guild along with representing the chimney sweeping trade in Europe as part of ESCHFOE. We also undertake liason work between the European chimney sweeping associations (ESCHFOE), several stearing groups and sit on carbon monoxide awareness boards (COCAA).

ESCHFOE Photo

Heads of some of the chimney sweeping Guild`s from around the world taken at the ESCHFOE meeting in Muhlbach Bavaria

I believe that the standards that I hold, have been instilled in the Clean sweep work force which is steadily growing. We now have several full time Master sweeps and also a superb office staff. I believe that the experience that the Clean sweep staff have cumulatively, is the greatest of any chimney sweeping company within the UK and our values are unbeatable anywhere. We have a motto which is ` Traditional values Modern Excellence`. This motto defines our company as one who upholds age old traditions and customer service while we utilise the newest techniques and best equipment.

Looking to the future we have restarted long lost apprenticeship programs so that our company continues to grow and the art of chimney sweeping is not lost.

All the best

Daniel Hodgson