It’s easy to ignore the chimney—until you’re starting to experience issues with it.

Whether smoke is clouding up in your home when you burn a fire, or you’ve noticed a bunch of soot starting to collect, it’s important to take care of those issues.

We’re going to talk about how to clean a chimney, giving you some insight into the ways you can take care of it in the best way possible.

How to Clean a Chimney the Right Way

Before we get started, we should mention there are some large and spectacular chimneys out there. In that case, you’re in luck.

Finding a good chimney sweep is as easy as pie, and they’ll be able to take care of the process for you so you don’t have to put yourself in danger. Throughout this whole process, be sure to stop and call a chimney sweep if you find yourself in danger.

That said, let’s get started.

1. Get Set Up

The first thing to do is to prepare the area around your fireplace. Start by getting all the furniture out of the immediate area and covering any immovable furniture with a cloth.

As you clean, a fine layer of dust will emerge and get on anything near the base of your chimney. So, lay a tarp down on the floor immediately in front of the chimney that has about a ten-foot reach. This way, you can be confident that nothing gets affected by the dust and soot that could potentially come your way.

You should also lay a tarp or sheet plastic over the entry to your fireplace because soot will come down as you’re cleaning from above.

2. Prepare Your Tools

To properly clean your chimney, you’ll need a few key tools.

Pick up some chimney brushes, extension rods, a dust filter for your vacuum, a ladder (if you don’t have roof access), a dust mask, cordless drill, and safety glasses.

3. Get Ready on the Roof

Depending on your home, you may need to use a ladder to get to the roof. If it’s at all dangerous, you should clean with a partner who can hold the ladder for you. When you’re situated, you can then unscrew the chimney cap with your cordless drill and a screwdriver bit.

Get your extension rod to its first notch and brush down around the chimney, getting everything you can before you reach full extension of your first notch. Then, extend the rod in whatever way your rod allows and do the same thing.

Keep scrubbing deeper until you reach the smoke shelf, which is typically the only depth required to effectively clean the chimney on your own. You can then put the caps back on your chimney and go back to the interior of your home.

Wait about ten minutes before you take the sheet plastic off. Once that time is up, remove the plastic and clean any soot that’s made its way into your home.

Need More Home Improvement Tips?

Home ownership entails a whole lot of activities that you probably didn’t expect.

Whether you need to know how to clean a chimney or improve your living room, we’re here to help.

Explore our site for all of the tips and tricks you need.