Friday, October 24, 2014

How to Clean Your Fireplace

Having a fireplace in the home is a real delight. However, that delight can turn deadly if a chimney fire breaks out. Chimney fires happen because creosote builds up in chimneys over time. Creosote is highly flammable, and homeowners need to clean their fireplaces regularly to keep them free of creosote deposits. Here is a guide on how to clean your fireplace.

Dress for the Mess

Cleaning a fireplace is a messy job. It is important to wear old clothes and gloves when cleaning it. It is also important to put down newspaper or a protective drop cloth to protect the floor that surrounds the fireplace from the soot that will be dislodged during the cleaning process. It is also a smart move to wear a dust mask to keep from breathing in the ash and soot that will be in the air while cleaning the fireplace.

Time to Brush

The best way how to clean your fireplace is to start by cleaning the chimney. Shine a flashlight up the chimney to look for soot deposits. Use a chimney brush to dislodge any deposits that are present. You will need to use long poles to get the chimney brush up high enough to clean the entire length of the chimney.

Scrub It Clean

Once all the soot is cleaned from the chimney, it is time to clean the fireplace itself. Use a shovel to remove all the ash from the fireplace. It is then necessary to use a scrub brush to clean all the ash and soot from the fireplace. Use a solution of six tablespoons of trisodium phosphate, one cup of chlorine bleach and a gallon of warm water. Using a scrub brush with this solution will allow the ash and soot to more easily come off the fireplace walls.

Rinse

After the fireplace has been scrubbed well, use warm water to rinse it clean. The whole process will take a few hours to complete. It is easier to clean a fireplace when the job is performed regularly. A chimney should be cleaned at least twice a year to prevent dangerous creosote deposits from building up.

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