Chimney Problems and Solutions

Common Problems  

Chimneys are quirky things and there can be many influences which will either help of interfere with their safe and correct operation.

Here are some of our solutions:

Smokey room from disused fire place.
The chimney was inspected and smoke tested. It was found that smoke from a downstairs fireplace exiting the chimney at the top was being pulled back down by the chimney of the fireplace not in use. This is caused by differences in air pressure around the house and outside.
Solution – Seal disused fire place and fit a chimney cap. Both the seal and the chimney cap can be easily removed should the fire place be needed again.
chimney problems 1
Smoke from fire coming back in room

The chimney was checked for blockages, inspected and tested. Sometimes, in large fire places the air moves very slowly, this can cause smoke not to be drawn up by the chimney quick enough causing smoke to come back in the room. A smoke test was carried out on the fireplace and this was found to be the case. As smoke travelled up from the fire it got trapped in dead space (still air). As it built up it leaked from each top corner of the fire place, back into the room.

Solution - After careful testing it was found that a hood would completely solve the problem. A hood cuts away any still air and helps it flow smoothly and in the same direction as the smoke. Cardboard test hoods were used to create a suitable design.

chimney problems 2 chimney problems 3 chimney problems 4
Water leaking down chimney

The fireplace, chimney, chimney stack and chimney pot were inspected. The chimney is lined with a flexible flue liner and it was found that water was flowing from the pot down the outside of the liner and onto the top of the stove causing severe rusting. This was cause by an unsuitable bird guard on the pot allowing the rain to build up and enter the chimney.

Solution – A new bird guard with a lower profile and a rain cover was fitted. The chimney pot and stack were checked and sealed for leaks. The stove was wire brushed, cleaned and polished. The stove pipe was re-sprayed. Good as new.

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Below are some things which could effect a chimneys performance.
  • Length
  • Internal diameter
  • Wind Direction
  • Size of fire place
  • Differences in air pressure around the house and
  • Location
  • Blockage

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Large chimney ‘I have over 10 years of experience and knowledge of chimneys, fires, their behaviour and safe use.’