How To Find And Hire A Reputable Chimney Sweep In Your Area
A chimney sweep is a contractor who is trained to inspect, clean and repair your chimneys. The
chimney sweeping business is a large industry and has become one of the most popular start-up
businesses. Many people have started these types of businesses because they do not need a large
initial capital investment. As a result, consumers can never be sure which companies are reliable and
trustworthy, as business owners always claim theirs company is the best. Therefore, you should know
how to find and hire a reputable chimney sweep in your area.
Chimney inspection is very important to ensure its proper functioning and to keep the homeowners
safe. Although you can follow the fireplace and chimney safety tips, you should at least hire a
reputable chimney contractor to inspect and clean your chimney once a year and make repairs if
The first thing to do is ask around. The easiest way to find a reputable chimney contractor is through
experience. Since homeowners do regular chimney inspection, they tend to hire and go back to the
same company once they found them reliable. Gather information regarding their skills, knowledge
and equipment used. Going through your chimney requires adequate training to be able to thoroughly
remove creosote deposits, accurately check proper construction, airflow blockage and combustible
clearance, and fully repair damages. Specialized tools are used by some companies such as x-ray
machines or scan cameras to aid in detecting cracks, holes, or other damages.
Secondly, search chimney cleaners in your area and make sure they are certified. In the USA, the
organizations that regulate the industry and provide certifications are National Chimney Sweeps Guild
(NCSG), Certified Chimney Professionals (CCP), and Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA). In
the United Kingdom, trade associations control the industry and they include The National
Association of Chimney Sweeps (NACS), The Association of Professional and Independent Chimney
Sweeps (APICS), and The Guild of Master Chimney Sweeps (GMCS). Make sure the company is
certified by any of these or you can visit their websites for detailed information and list of other
companies available in your area. Contact them to get a sense of their professionalism and compare
how they treat their customers.
Once you have the list, compare the length of time each company has been operating. You should
also verify if they have unresolved complaints filed through Better Business Bureau or any consumer
protection agency available in your area. Ensure that they carry valid liability and workers' comp
insurance to ensure you would not be held responsible for any accidents that might happen. Then,
request references or read customer reviews on sites like AngliesList.com to get an idea for what
previous customers are saying about individual chimney cleaning businesses.
Lastly, compare the rates of multiple chimney sweeps. No matter how appealing the cheap rates are,
you should take note that low rates may indicate poor service quality. Always remember that chimney
inspection and cleaning should be done appropriately so that you and your family will be hazard-free
and will fully enjoy the benefits of having a fireplace at your house on a cold winter day. Thus, make
use of the gathered information to be able to find and hire a reputable chimney sweep in your area.
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