Clean Sweep

We're not quite cold enough to use that fireplace in your family room or den.

But before you do, Volunteer TV's Kim Bedford tells us that wood or gas burner could bring trouble if it's not checked.

It's pretty simple, but for one reason or another, many folks avoid it, having your fireplace cleaned and inspected every year.

Chimney Sweeps West says you've got to do it, if nothing else, for your family's safety.

"He had minimal amounts of creosote, but he had a little bit of structural crackage on top of the chimney," said Mark Linville.

Jeff Ellis had his chimney cleaned and inspected.

"We've not had it done. We just moved in in November, had the house rebuilt and remodeled and didn't know if it'd ever been done or not."

And with a 40 year old home and fireplace, Ellis says this chimney check before the winter comes is crucial.

"There's some damage on top. They said they can repair that. The flu didn't open or close all the way. They repaired that for us."

Chimney Sweeps West is the company taking care of Ellis' fireplace.

"We have a vac system that's actually designed for chimney cleaning with a special filter to protect your home," said Linville.

"It's very clean. I thought it'd be messy inside the house, but there's no dust. There's nothing inside the house," said Ellis.

"We use a lot of bright lighting and various brushes to clean the flu, the fire box and the smoke chamber," said Mark

The average price for Chimney Sweeps West runs around a hundred dollars, and Ellis says his family's safety is worth every penny.

"Knowing that hopefully with a clean fireplace it's not going to catch on fire, won't have to worry about that. It's just one other problem out of the way."

"It's always safety first."

Chimney Sweeps West Owner Mark Linville says without yearly cleanings and checks you could run into some unexpected and dangerous damage.

"The flu liners, if they're cracked, can cause flu fires and the temperatures can actually exceed and ignite rafters in the house."

If you haven't had your fireplace cleaned and checked yet this year, all you have to do is call the chimney cleaners nearest you and make and appointment for them to come out to your home. Depending on your fireplace, it typically only takes about twenty minutes to clean.