And why is it necessary?
An annual chimney sweep is beneficial in a number of ways, most importantly because the process removes creosote buildup from the inner walls of the chimney. Creosote, which is a sticky tar-like substance that adheres to the inside of the chimney, is highly flammable and requires regular removal in order to prevent chimney fires. Even if you do not burn wood in your fireplace regularly, the chimney is still susceptible to blockage from animal nests, the debris from which could easily ignite when you do start a fire.
The average cost of chimney sweepingHiring a professional chimney sweep will generally cost you between $100 and $300, with deep discounts at the low end of that range, and conditions requiring increased labor at the high end.
Dedicated DIYers can find chimney sweeping brushes online for as low as $20 if you're willing to put in the time, research, and labor. This route comes with risks, of course, particularly if working from the roof. Do it yourself and you'd also be missing out on the trained eye of a professional.
When you purchase a chimney sweeping service, after all, you're also in effect paying for the technician's experience and expertise. Additionally, chimney sweep professionals, because they sweep several chimneys a day, tend to invest in state-of-the-art, industry-grade equipment both for its effectiveness and efficiency.
Factors that increase costThough most companies have a standard price they charge for run-of-the-mill chimney sweep jobs, surcharges are often necessary for conditions that will render the job more labor-intensive or risky. Some examples:
Finding a companyPricing for a chimney sweep service will vary from company to company, as will the quality of work performed. Some questions you may consider asking in order to arrive at an informed decision include the following:
Wanna dig deeper? Download our free tipsheet: 5 Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Chimney Cleaning Company.