CSIA (Chimney Safety Institute of America}
NCSG (National Chimney Sweep Guild}



Frequently Asked Questions

Over the years in the chimney business we have talked to thousands of customers, solving problems, answering questions about their chimneys and sharing our knowledge. We want our customers to know all they can about their chimneys. We attend week long chimney conventions every year to further our education and training so we can better keep our customer safe and warm. If  you have any questions that are not addressed here, please feel free to e-mail or call us.  We we will be happy to answer any questions you might have.
Why do I need to have my chimney cleaned?

The purpose of having your chimney cleaned is to remove creosote and soot deposits that build up during the use of your chimney. If you use your chimney every year you want to have your chimney cleaned and inspected every year. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recommends that these units be evaluated every year and cleaned as needed.  The best time to clean your chimney is in the spring right after the burning season. Any creosote that has built up in your chimney can be removed at this time and if there are any repairs to be made they can be done before the next burning season. 

Here are some pictures of before and after a cleaning.
Picture before Chimney was cleaned. Salem, Indiana. Give us a call to inspect and clean your chimney
Picture after chimney was cleaned.  Salem, Indiana. Give us a call to inspect and clean your chimney
Picture before cleaning fireplace. New Albany, Indiana. Give us a call to inspect and clean your chimney
Picture after cleaning fireplace. New Albany, Indiana. Give us a call to inspect and clean your chimney
Picture before cleaning smoke chamber and flue. Highlander, Indiana. Give us a call to inspect and clean your chimney
Picture after cleaning smoke chamber and flue.  Highlander, Indiana.  Give us a call to inspect and clean your chimney.
How often should I have my chimney cleaned?

Most heating appliances give off toxic fumes and depend on a chimney to vent these fumes out of your home. Whether it be; wood, coal, corn, pellets, gas, or oil, the National Fire Protection Association(NFPA) recommends these units be inspected every year and cleaned as needed. As the chimney gets dirty it restricts the toxic fumes from going up and out of the chimney and could back up into your home, and by scheduling a chimney cleaning, and having it cleaned, it will give you the peace of mind knowing your chimney is safe to use.
How long does a chimney cleaning take?

A chimney cleaning normally takes between 1 to 3 hours. This depends on several things (removing glazed creosote, pulling inserts, very steep roofs, offsets in flues, bird nesting ect.) The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recommends that chimneys be inspected every year and cleaned as needed.
Why do I need my chimney inspected? 

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recommends an annual chimney inspection. Early detection of problems ensures the safety of your chimney. This provides you with the added security of knowing that it will be safe to use your wood stove and or fireplace during the next burning season. Why risk it when a  level 1 inspection it quick, inexpensive, and if you do need a cleaning we typically can do it right there on the spot. A chimney sweeping is a quick service. 

Here are some pictures of problems that we run into every day.
Chimney inspection we found no liner and missing mortar joints within the chimney. Cannelton, Indiana. Give us a call, a CSIA certified professional to inspect your chimney.
This chimney inspection we found a broken liner. Creosote leaking passed liner thru the brick into the living space. this chimney has had many flue fires. English, Indiana. Give us a call, a CSIA certified professional to inspect your chimney.
On this inspection we found evidence of a chimney fire. Salem, Indiana. Give us a call, a CSIA certified professional to inspect your chimney.
This inspection we found thimble and connector pipe was to close too combustibles. Clarksville, Indiana  Give us a call, a CSIA certified professional to inspect your chimney.
On this inspection we found no chimney cap, chimney not tall enough, Liner was broken, Mortar crown deteriorated, Livonia, Indiana. Give us a call, a CSIA certified professional to inspect your chimney.
This inspection we found no flashing. Dixon, Kentucky. Give us a call, a CSIA certified professional to inspect your chimney.
This inspection at a girl scout camp in Kentucky we found this chimney has had a flue fire and all the flue tile are broken. Has no chimney cap. Give us a call, a CSIA certified professional to inspect your chimney.
This inspection we found water soaking into top of chimney. Deteriorating the top of the chimney. Lapeer, Michigan.
This inspection shows the top of a badly deteriorated  chimney. (Water damage). Lapeer, Michigan. Give us a call, a CSIA certified professional to inspect your chimney.
On this inspection we found this unsafe very badly deteriorated flue block chimney. (Water damage). Salem, Indiana. Give us a call, a CSIA certified professional to inspect your chimney.
Why do I need a chimney cap? 

There are a few reasons for a chimney cap. Chimney caps can protect a chimney from the elements. Water can cause major damage to the inside of your chimney. Water will rust out your metal firebox, damper, and deteriorate a masonry firebox. To protect the whole chimney we recommend a multi-flue cap that covers the entire chimney.
A chimney cap that has a mesh screen can also protect your home in case of a chimney fire. During a chimney fire burning creosote will come out of the top of the chimney and land on the roof and can cause a house fire. We recommend a cap that is appropriate for your chimney and heating appliance in your home with a properly sized spark arrest for protection. This will reduce the chance of a house fire.

Chimney caps can protect you and the animals. Animals (such as Birds, Squirrels, Raccoons, Bees) can carry numerous diseases and can affect the air you breathe inside your home. Animals such as these want to make their home inside your chimney. Having a well made strong chimney cap with a strong mesh screen will keep out the most determined  animals. We recommend stainless steel, painted stainless steel, and or copper chimney caps. These caps are strong and durable unlike your typical store bought painted metal caps which will rust away and stain your chimney and roof. 

Here are some pictures that show why a chimney cap is required.
Installing a chimney cap can protect your animals. Salem, Indiana. Give us a call to install your stainless steel or copper chimney cap.
Raccoons like to make your home there home. Raccoons carry warm and rabies. Charlestown, Indiana. Give us a call to install your stainless steel or copper chimney cap.
Catching a raccoon isn't easy. A chimney cap can prevent raccoons from interring your chimney. Charlestown, Indiana.  Give us a call to install your stainless steel or copper chimney cap.
These small chimney swifts birds are a protected bird. We can not install a chimney cap until all the birds have lift the chimney. You can get from  these birds the disease Histoplasmosis. New Albany, Indiana.
These chimney swifts were migrating south for the winter. Huntingburg, Indiana.
This group of honey bees swarmed into this chimney after there home was cut down. Washington, Indiana.
Squares like to make your home there home. Let us remove the squares and cap your chimney. Robinson, Illinois.
We can see water streaking down the flue.  Give us a call to install your stainless steel or copper chimney cap. Milltown, Indiana.
Water coming down your chimney can cause your firebox to rust out as seen in this picture.  Give us a call to install your stainless steel or copper chimney cap and water proof your chimney. Corydon, Indiana.
Rusted out wood stove insert do from no chimney cap. French Lick, Indiana.
Chimney cap can prevent your  metal firebox from rusting out. Give us a call to install your stainless steel or copper chimney cap. Palmyra, Indiana.
Another shot of a rusted out wood stove insert do from no chimney cap. Give us a call to install your stainless steel or copper chimney cap. Little Nashville, Indiana.
Flue fire. Fiery creosote coming out of the top of the chimney during this chimney fire, setting the roof on fire do from no chimney cap to contain the fiery creosote.  Give us a call to install your stainless steel or copper chimney cap. Salem, Indiana
Chimney fire burn another home. Fiery creosote coming out of the top of your chimney will catch your roof on fire. Put a cap on it. Or Give us a call to install your stainless steel or copper chimney cap. Cincinnati,  Ohio.
Why is there water coming into my fireplace?  

This is a common problem. There are a few ways water can come into your fireplace or chimney. It can soak in through the mortar crown on top of the chimney. Water can also soak in through the exterior brickwork and come into your chimney . The water that comes into your chimney can cause some major damage. Some signs of moisture in your fireplace are (water streaks inside your fireplace, a white powdery substance on the brickwork, the metal firebox rusting, the insert is rusting, etc.) Problems like these can be hard to find. There is a solution, call a trained certified chimney technician to inspect your chimney and find the problem and make any necessary repairs, and then apply Chimney Saver water repellent made especially for masonry chimneys. It's 100% breathability to waterproof your chimney is unlike the typical store bought waterproofing products that seal the surface and do not allow the chimney to breath, trapping the moisture in the chimney causing even more damage. All masonry has to breathe and should not be sealed. 

Here are some pictures how water can get into your chimney.      
Water soaking in thru the mortar crown of the chimney and gravity pulling it down into the chimney. This is one way moisture can get into your chimney. Give us a call and let us water proof your chimney with 10 to 15 year warranties
Water can come in thru the flashing around your chimney, if it is not sealed Properly or has no flashing at all. Give us a call and let us install new or seal your flashing, and water proof your chimney with 10 to 15 year warranties.  Lapeer, Michigan.
Water can come into your chimney thru your mortar crown and any cracks in the crown.Give us a call and let us Repair or install a new concrete crown lifetime warranty and water proof your chimney with 10 to 15 year warranties. Crystal, Indiana.
Water can come into your chimney down the flue if there is not a proper chimney cap. Let us install a life time stainless steel or copper chimney cap for you today. Laconia, Indiana.
If you see Green or Black moss or black mold growing on your chimney then your chimney is holding water. Give us a call and let us water proof your chimney with 10 to 15 year warranties. Brandenburg, Kentucky.
Brick ledges on the sides of the chimney are a good way for water to soak into your chimney. Give us a call and let us repair and water proof your chimney with 10 to 15 year warranties. Brandenburg, Kentucky.
Brick ledges on the sides of the chimney are a good way for water to soak into your chimney. Give us a call and let us repair the ledges and water proof your chimney with 10 to 15 year warranties. Brandenburg, Kentucky.
Water will come into your chimney thru cracks in the crown. Give us a call and let us repair and water proof your chimney with 10 to 15 year warranties. Louisville, Kentucky.
Chimney mortar crowns that are flat on top will not shed water but will soak in the water and deteriorate your chimney like this one.Give us a call and let us repair and water proof your chimney with 10 to 15 year warranties. Jasper, Indiana.
Does your fireplace look like this? Do you have water coming into your chimney or fireplace? Give us a call and let us water proof your chimney with 10 to 15 year warranties. Hayesville, Indiana.
If you are seeing moss or mold on your chimney then your chimney is holding water as seen in this picture.Give us a call and let us water proof your chimney with 10 to 15 year warranties. Clarksville, Indiana.
Thin mortar crown can deteriorate exposing the chimneys brick or stone underneath the crown. Give us a call and let repair and water proof your chimney with 10 to 15 year warranties. Corydon, Indiana
Why are there pieces of brick falling off my chimney?  

This is a common problem. This is caused by moisture penetrating the masonry chimney from the outside in. All masonry is porous and will absorb water. When this moisture freezes and thaws in the brickwork the brick facing begins to crack and deteriorate causing the brick facing to fall off. 

If you have a gas furnace or gas water heater venting into a masonry chimney without an appropriate gas venting lining system you are in effect saturating the chimney structure from the inside out with acidic water vapors. The byproduct of gas combustion is acidic water vapor. This water vapor is deteriorating your chimney. 

Here are some pictures of water damaged chimney.   
Spalling brick (Water damage) Eckerty, Indiana.
Chimney deteriorating from water penetrating chimney thru the crown and the brick. Jasper, Indiana.
Spalling of the brick from water penetrating the brick and then freezing and then thawing. (water damage) George town, Indiana.
Flue block deteriorating from freeze thaw. (water damage) Salem, Indiana.
Deteriorated chimney. (water damage)  Jasper, Indiana.
Brick facings laying around chimney on the roof. This is called spalling of the brick. (water damage) Seymour, Indiana.
Why do I smell a bad odor coming from my chimney or fireplace?

Air in your home normally moves up your chimney and out the top, carrying  the odors in your chimney out. Due to temperature and pressure changes inside your home, air can move down the chimney into your living space. This is what we call down drafts. Having your chimney inspected and cleaned will minimize the odors coming into your home. 

Here are some before and after pictures of the removal of smelly creosote, animal, and bird mess. 
Bad odor can come from creosote inside your chimney. This is a before picture.  Louisville, Kentucky.
This is a after we cleaned the chimney flue. We removed the creosote that was bringing in a bad odor into the home. Louisville, Kentucky.
Bad odors was coming from the fireplace this is a before we cleaned the fireplace. New Albany, Indiana.
This is a after picture. After we cleaned the creosote from the fireplace. New Albany, Indiana.
This chimney had a bad odor coming for it. This was a family of raccoons that moved into this chimney. Charlestown, Indiana.
This is how we  remove raccoons from the chimney and then we clean up there mess they leave behind. Then we release the animal back into the wide in a remote area. Then we install a proper chimney cap on the chimney. Charlestown, Indiana.
This chimney had a bad odor coming from it. We found a group of chimney swifts. After the chimney swifts left we installed a proper chimney cap. Huntingburg, Indiana.
I've had a chimney fire, what do I do now?  CALL A CERTIFIED CHIMNEY SWEEP!

After having a chimney fire you'll want to call your local certified chimney sweep to come out to inspect and sweep the flue, and run a video scan of the chimney to make sure that there are no damages to the liner and chimney. If there are any damages they should be repaired before using your chimney again. If damages are found this is something that can be turned into your homeowners insurance. 

Here are some pictures of some chimney fires and the damages they cause.
Flue fire that caused a house fire. If you had a flue fire call a CSIA certified chimney sweep.  Salem, Indiana.
Chimney fire with fireman on site.  If you had a flue fire call a CSIA certified chimney sweep to do an inspection. Louisville, Kentucky.
Chimney fire that caught the house on fire.   If you had a flue fire call a CSIA certified chimney sweep to do an inspection. New Amsterdam, Indiana.
Chimney fire take many lives each year.   If you had a flue fire call a CSIA certified chimney sweep to do an inspection. Petersburg, Indiana.
Chimney fire middle of the day.   If you had a flue fire call a CSIA certified chimney sweep to do an inspection. Princeton, Indiana.
Most chimney fires go undetected you don't know that you had one and they cause damage.   If you had a flue fire call a CSIA certified chimney sweep to do an inspection. Rockport, Indiana.
This chimney fire took there home. don't let it take yours.   If you had a flue fire call a CSIA certified chimney sweep to do an inspection. Cincinnati,  Ohio.
Chimney fire  early morning.  If you had a flue fire call a CSIA certified chimney sweep to do an inspection. Cornettsville, Indiana.
Chimney fire burnt home late evening.   If you had a flue fire call a CSIA certified chimney sweep to do an inspection. Bedford, Indiana.
Chimney fire early morning, firefighters on site.  If you had a flue fire call a CSIA certified chimney sweep to do an inspection. Louisville, Kentucky.
Chimney fire remains. This is called expanded creosote. If you see this in your chimney call a CSIA certified chimney sweep to do an inspection. Cannelton, Indiana.
This chimney fire caused these flue tile to collapse and block off chimney.   If you had a flue fire call a CSIA certified chimney sweep to do an inspection. Bedford, Indiana.
This chimney has had many flue fires and the home owner did not know. Home owner said they had never had a flue fire but here is the evidence.  If you had a flue fire call a CSIA certified chimney sweep to do an inspection. Ellettsville, Indiana.
This chimney has had many flue fires. Liner is leaking creosote.  If you had a flue fire call a CSIA certified chimney sweep to do an inspection. English, Indiana.
Chimney fire at a girl scout camp. They did not know they had a fire until they call us for a level one inspection. Fire broken the tile from top to bottom of chimney. Girl scout camp in Kentucky.
Chimney fire has broken flue tile and broken the mortar crown.  If you had a flue fire call a CSIA certified chimney sweep to do an inspection. Bloomfield, Indiana.
Flue fire damage. Milltown, Indiana.
Pieces of broken flue tile that fell down the chimney after a chimney fire.  If you had a flue fire call a CSIA certified chimney sweep to do an inspection. Odon, Indiana.
Damages to the chimney liner after a flue fire. If you had a flue fire call a CSIA certified chimney sweep to do an inspection. Robinson, Illinois.
If there are cracks on the outside of your chimney then you have had a chimney fire. If you had a flue fire call a CSIA certified chimney sweep to do an inspection. Paoli, Indiana.
Here is a picture of flue fire damage on the outside of the chimney.  If you had a flue fire call a CSIA certified chimney sweep to do an inspection. Otisco, Indiana.
If you have seen any cracks on the outside of your chimney you have had a flue fire.  If you had a flue fire call a CSIA certified chimney sweep to do an inspection. Paoli, Indiana.
Flue fire damage. Don't put your family at risk. Jeffersonville, Indiana.
Flue fire damage. This customer thought these cracks were weather damage, they did not know they were having flue fires. Worthington, Indiana.
To find your local  certified chimney sweep go to 
 www.csia.org

Phone: 1-812-723-4284      Toll Free: 1-877-488-4284        Fax: 1-812-723-4817
Biulding new masonry chimney thru a metal roof  Leavenworth, Indiana.
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Some counties we cover in Indiana:   Brown, Clark, Crawford, Davies, Dubois, Floyd, Gibson, Greene, Harrison, Jackson, Knox, Lawrence, Martin, Monroe, Orange, Owen, Perry, Pike, Scott, Spencer, Sullivan, Washington.
Some of the major towns we cover in Indiana:  Austin, Bedford, Bicknell, Bloomfield, Bloomington, Brownstown, Cannelburg, Cannelton, Carlisle, Charlestown, Chriseny, Clarksville, Cornettsville, Corydon, Crane, Ellettsville, Elnora, English, Ferdinand, French Lick, Greenville, Hardinsburg, Harrodsburg, Hazelton, Holland, Huron, Huntingburg, Jasper, Jeffersonville, Kurtz, Laconia, Leavenworth, Linton, Little York, Livonia, Lyons, Medora, Milltown, Mitchell, Monroe City, Nashville, New Albany, New Amsterdam, New Pekin, Oakland City, Oaktown, Odon, Orleans, Otisco, Paoli, Petersburg, Princeton, Rockport, Salem, Santa Clause, Scottsburg, Sellersburg, Seymour, Shoals, Spurgeon, Sullivan, Tell City, Vincennes, Washington, Worthington.   
Some other states we work in:  Illinois, Kentucky,  Michigan, Ohio, South Carolina.