Chimneys need periodic inspection and cleaning
to maintain efficiency and to reduce the chance of chimney fire.
When selecting the correct chimney brush for your chimney, first
measure the inside of your chimney and match that size to a brush
below. An oversize brush will not improve cleaning and could become
lodged in the chimney. An undersized brush will not provide the
pressure on the walls for proper cleaning.
How do I clean the chimney and control the Chimney Brush?
There are four common methods used in cleaning the chimney and controlling the brush.
Method one: Flexible chimney brush rod - top down. Attach the brush securely to the flexible rod and lower into the top of the chimney adding more rods as necessary to reach the flue bottom.
Method Two: Insert the brush and rod up through the fireplace damper or chimney clean-out door. Add more rods as needed to reach the top of the chimney. This method is often messy since sealing the bottom opening of the chimney cannot be done during cleaning. Make sure to cover the area around the opening to prevent staining carpets, furniture , etc.
Method Three: Line and weight method. This
is the best method to use when the top of the chimney is permanently
restricted by a covering. Attach a compact 20 lb. weight (minimum) to
one end of the the chimney brush using a Chimney
Brush Pull Ring and attach a rope that is more than longer enough
to reach to the bottom of the flue, to the other brush end. Seal off
the chimney opening to prevent soot from entering the home.
Method Four: Dual line method. This method
requires two people, one on the roof and the other at the clean-out
or chimney opening. Attach a rope to to each end of the brush. Note
-- you will need to purchase two Chimney
Brush Pull Ring for each end of the brush. Drop one end of the rope
to the person below. Cleaning is done by alternately pulling the ropes
to move the brush up and down in the chimney.
For all methods sweep or vacuum up all residue prior to using the chimney. Be careful to check for debris behind the damper, on the smoke shelf and in elbows and T-connectors. Clean the chimney brush after each use and coat with a rust preservative (WD-40 spray) works good.
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How do I choose a Chimney Brush?
Use the following guide to select the proper
Chimney Brush for your chimney.
Measure the inner opening (both directions) of your fireplace or woodstove chimney.
For masonry chimneys you'll need to measure the inner opening dimensions in both directions. Buy a brush that is at least as big as your chimney liner otherwise it will not reach the side walls of your chimney and won't do an adequate job. If you buy a chimney brush that is too big then it will be harder to get down the chimney but will work unless excessively oversized.
Wire bristle chimney brushes such as the Rutland Chimney Sweep & Master Sweep are the most commonly used and do a good job. The Master Sweep series has more bristles and will generally make the job easier and faster. Wire bristle brushes are not recommended for metal chimney flues.
Poly chimney brushes are for use in metal chimneys and older fragile chimneys as they don't scratch the chimney walls. Standard poly brushes are very stiff and may be difficult to work into a very dirty chimney and also do not go around any bends that may be present in a chimney system.
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