Regularly cleaning your fireplace will not only save you money on energy bills, but it will also ensure that your fireplace does not become a safety hazard. These tips will help you make sure that you run an efficient and safe fireplace.
Vacuum the hearth and the area around the hearth at least once a week to make sure there is no soot or dust build up. This will make the fireplace more efficient. You should make sure that the embers from the fire have been dead for at least 18 hours before you vacuum the area.
Minimize and clean creosote
Creosote can build up in the chimney and flue. The material is tarlike and is extremely flammable which makes a build up a huge fire hazard. You may need to call in a professional chimney cleaning and repairs company to properly clean out the chimney and flue. You can minimize the build up of creosote by using well-dried and seasoned wood in your fireplace. Before you start using your fireplace for the year, inspect the flue, chimney and firebox for accumulation of creosote.
Clean the fireplace
When you clean your fireplace, you can used damp coffee grounds from your coffee maker to prevent the dust from flying around. Sprinkle some over the ashes after they cool before you start cleaning the fireplace. Additionally, you should not use an abrasive cleaner in the fireplace as it can leave a residue that is flammable. Try to avoid watering down the fire because the ashes will end up in a muddy paste that will be hard to clean up.
Clean the firebox
The firebox which contains the fire is usually kept clean due to the heat of the fire. However, you may want to scrub the firebox walls with a stiff brush. Make sure you do not use a wire brush and keep to under the lintel. The firebrick can also crumble easily so be careful with it. Make sure you do not bend the ends of the firebox, especially the areas where it enters the flue. This can turn into a fire hazard.
With these tips, you should be able to keep your fireplace clean and working at its best efficiency. If you have any trouble maintaining your fireplace, you should call in a professional to inspect and clean it regularly. Regular inspections will prevent your fireplace from becoming a fire hazard and will keep your energy bills down.