Why Your Chimney Might Smell Badly This Summer

Why Your Chimney Might Smell Badly This Summer

If visitors somehow managed to stroll into your home right now, what’s the main thing you think they’d take note of? Maybe the scent radiating from your chimney was what crossed your mind; if so, don’t panic. This is a typical event for some property holders, one that is particularly predominant amid the hotter summer months. The uplifting news is help is close at hand. The experts from Chimney Sweeps West are here to help you.

Why Does My Chimney Smell So Bad?

The appropriate response here is a truly direct one: creosote. If you happened to depended intensely on your chimney this past winter and maybe utilized more wood than you’d at first arranged (some of which would not have been properly prepared), creosote could have buildup on the inward walls of your fireplace’s chimney. These deposits, when joined with the additional water in the air that is noticeable all around this season of year, can emanate a completely disagreeable fragrance. Perhaps you’ve been thinking about whether you’re the main individual who needs to manage this issue, we hope you can discover some comfort in realizing this is a typical occurrence that chimney clients have been managing for quite a long time! It’s part of the long term care that goes into your chimney.


How Do I Rid My Home of These Smells?

Creosote odors tend to linger. They saturate your smokestack’s permeable stone work and never seem to dissipate. In any case, you can try to treat the issue to help prevent yourself, your family, and your visitors from being driven out by the stench. The professional crew at Chimney Sweeps West can come out, investigate your chimney to guarantee that the main issue is the creosote, and clear out the deposits causing the odor. Having your chimney cleaned every year is a flat out must on the off chance that you intend to make full utilization of your chimney when the climate turns icy!

An Additional Consideration for You

Perhaps you’ve had your fireplace legitimately cleaned and yet have found scents every now and then, you could likewise be having a draft issue. The dominant part of older fireplaces were built with throat-mount dampers. Their metal-on-metal construction is their downfall with regards to keeping the odor inside the fireplace. Since they can’t be completely closed when the chimney is not being used, some scent can be smelled through the opening (regardless of how little it might show up) as outside air is constrained down your smokestack. Since there’s no fire going in the chimney to make an updraft, the air has an easier time moving into your home.

As should be obvious, chimney clients around the globe battle with rancid smokestacks, particularly amid the summer months. The professionals here at Chimney Sweeps West are here to help moderate this issue (and in addition whatever other issues you may have) for you. We urge you to get in touch with us at your soonest accommodation to plan an appointment so you can come back to making the most of your scent free living space.

What’s Causing My Chimney Odor?

Having a nasty smell coming from your chimney is NOT something you want to wake up to on a warm summer day. Even when you aren’t using it, your chimney can cause your house to smell. The main culprit is usually creosote buildup, but there are a few things to consider when it comes to foul chimney odors.

Different Types of Chimney Odor

Most chimney odor simply smells a bit like smoke. That’s because the smoke leaving your chimney causes buildup of creosote and soot over time. This residue will have a tendency to buildup faster if you use woods in your chimney that don’t burn as well.

To delay creosote buildup in your chimney, it’s always best to stick to well-seasoned hard woods. But even when using the right kinds of firewood, your chimney will still need a cleaning from time to time.

Apart from creosote and soot buildup, however, there are things that can cause your chimney to smell bad. And in some cases it won’t smell like smoke at all.

Cases where your chimney might smell bad for reasons other than creosote buildup include:

  • Mold: This isn’t a problem that should normally be present in chimneys, but if your chimney smells moldy, it might be because you have a roof leak. The wetness of the leak creates the perfect conditions for mold to grow in your chimney. This problem can be fixed by having your roof checked. Only once the leak is fixed, have your chimney cleaned. After all, there’s no use in cleaning your chimney without fixing the underlying problem first.
  • Animals: There are precautions you can take to keep animals out of your chimney. However, homeowners often don’t realize how easily animals try to get into the home through a chimney. Birds also like to make their nests there. If the smell coming from your chimney smells more like animal scats, there’s a good chance you’ve got guests. Unfortunately, animals also get stuck in the chimney occasionally, meaning that if your chimney smells like something died in there, that might very well be the case.
  • Debris: Once again, there are ways to keep leaves and other debris from entering your chimney, but many homeowners don’t know about this. Once again, this can smell moldy, rotten or perhaps even as if an animal died in your chimney.

Those are the main chimney odor problems you can expect that don’t have anything to do with creosote buildup. However, by keeping your chimney safer, even these problems can be eliminated.

It’s worthwhile to mention that keeping your chimney as dry as possible can go a long way in preventing bad odors. Anything from debris to creosote will smell worse if it gets wet.

The best way to fix your chimney odor problems is by first identifying the cause. You can do this by calling a professional chimney sweep to do an inspection. Here at Chimney Sweeps West, we have many years of experience in helping our customers fix and prevent chimney problems, so be sure to call us if you’re in Knoxville and you need help with your chimney.

How to Prevent Chimney Odor

Preventing chimney odor is actually surprisingly easy. One of the first things you can do to prevent bad odors from entering your home through your fireplace is to ensure that your chimney stays clean. You can do this by having you chimney cleaned and inspected once a year, preferably before winter so you know that it’s safe to use before making a fire.

Apart from this, you should do your best to keep debris and animals out of your chimney. Anything that gets into your chimney is not only likely to cause bad chimney odors, it’s also a fire hazard. Debris or bird’s nests in your chimney can light on fire easily, causing a problem that’s way worse than just a foul smell.

To prevent anything from getting into your chimney, you should have a proper chimney cap installed. The chimney cap will prevent some debris from getting into your chimney, but more importantly, it’s meant to keep water out. Keeping water out of your chimney will help so that any creosote buildup that might be present doesn’t get wet. This helps mainly because creosote smells worse when it’s wet. Apart from that, the cap will help keep water out to prevent mold from growing in your chimney.

To keep animals out, you should go for a chimney cap with a net.

What if My Chimney Still Smells?

Your chimney might smell because of drafts coming into your home through the chimney. Ideally, air should actually move out of your home through the chimney rather than entering your home. But sometimes the drafts don’t flow right, causing air to enter your home through the chimney.

Keeping the windows open might help for this problem somewhat. Other than that, having your chimney cleaned regularly can help a lot for this problem too.

If you recently repainted your burning stove, allowing the fireplace to burn for short intervals of time while keeping the windows open can help with chimney odors. Freshly painted or polished burning stoves have a tendency to smell rather bad for a while after being repainted, which might be another cause of foul odors from your fireplace.

Pick The Perfect Handyman Service Provider

It is safe to say that you are searching for home rebuilding administrations? Would you like to improve the excellence of your home? It is safe to say that you are searching for jack of all trades administrations to settle harms? You have to pick the ideal jack of all trades specialist organization. You can without much of a stretch discover them close you. Simply take after a few stages to pick the best one.

Diagnosing Chimney Odors

With a hotter climate in the forecast, your chimney is most likely one of the last things at the forefront of your thoughts at the present time. In any case, the warmth and dampness of summer can make certain things inside your smokestack discharge strong and unsavory scents, which can wind up inside your home through the chimney.

Tips to Summer Home Maintenance

The mid year months have arrived. To benefit as much as possible from your late spring and facilitate the weight of home support and repair, here are 10 hints to keeping your home fit as a fiddle.

Heater and Air Conditioner Maintenance – With the change of the season, you should change your air channel and consider getting a tune-up for summer. There is nothing more terrible at that point going into the mid year months and having the A/C go out. Have it looked at now and to spare you bother later.

Smoke Detector – Make beyond any doubt you test your smoke and carbon monoxide finder and change the battery. In the event that your identifier is more seasoned than 10 years, it’s an ideal opportunity to supplant it.

Chimney Cleaning – Although you won’t be utilizing your chimney again until the fall, now is the ideal time to get it cleared and cleaned. This season of year is less occupied for the smokestack clear organizations, so you can complete it and have it prepared to pass when the leaves begin to fall.

Roof Fans – Mostly likely you’re roof fans have been icon over the winter months or it’s a great opportunity to invert the course. Pause for a moment and examine the fan, clean up the cutting edges and ensure they are adjusted.

Cleaning Gutters and Downspouts – While the climate is pleasant and warm, now would be an incredible time to get out your drains and downspouts. It’s suggest that canals get got out once every year and twice per year if there are a considerable measure of overhanging trees.

Outside Caulking – Take the opportunity to completely review the caulking around your windows and entryways. Bugs and ants are pulled in to the kitchen territory, by adding crisp caulking to the entryways and windows, this will help keep those little gatecrashers.

Power Washing – Your siding, walkways and decks require a decent scour this season of year. Consider weight washing them for unrivaled appearance and additionally keeping up them for ideal utilize.

Pool Maintenance – Depending where you live, your pool presumably hasn’t been utilized since a year ago. Scour the dividers of the pool and also leveling out the water and include the important chemicals. Cleaning your pool takes time, however the advantages of swimming all late spring will be well justified, despite all the trouble.

Outside Paint Touch-up – Now is an ideal opportunity to go outside and touch-up the outside paint. On the off chance that you don’t have the paint shading for your touch-up, take a photo and go to your paint store to have them coordinate the photograph. Or, on the other hand in some cases, the paint store may convey a rep that can coordinate the paint for you.

Need help getting your summer projects done? Call us here at Chimney Sweeps West, we can help you with more than just your chimney.

Deck vs. Patio: Which is Perfect for Your Abode?

Picking between introducing a deck or a patio includes a reasonable number of functional, stylish, and individual contemplations. Keeping in mind the end goal to start settling on the choice between a deck, a patio, or both, how about we initially take a gander at the functional contrasts between the two.

While a yard much of the time alludes to an open air space that is set straightforwardly on the ground, decks are frequently lifted off of the ground by bolsters and can be various levels or raised to suit departure from a first or second story level. Porches can be attached to the house or separate from the home contingent upon inclination, yard size, and utilization, however they quite often require a level surface to keep development costs more sensible.

Decks then again can be all the more effortlessly intended to suit uneven scenes with higher backings and in addition distinctive levels and stairs, however they are generally associated with the home. While patios don’t by and large require licenses and reviews, decks, which are connected to the home, dependably require these perspectives.


Patios frequently have solid bases, yet a few mortgage holders utilize stone, tile, pavers, block, or different materials to make the establishment. While these materials are strong and impervious to the components, settling of the ground underneath them can cause uneven focuses in the surface that must be redressed every once in a while. For the most part, support is low, and with materials like locking pavers, the incidental substitution of individual pavers is refined decently effectively.

Since they are dependably at ground level, porches don’t require a rail unless there is an unexpected drop-off straightforwardly neighboring their limit. Decks are either made of wood, vinyl, or wood composite materials, however the backings are frequently made of pressure treated timber with solid footings.

The distinctive decking materials will have diverse levels of sturdiness and upkeep needs. Wood decks should be intermittently resealed while composite decks require less maintaining. The cost contrasts between the two are more about whether you will be paying more after some time in upkeep (wood deck) or a greater amount of an in advance cost with low up keep and for the most part longer life (composite).

Since most decks are hoisted off of the ground to some degree, they are commonly encased with some kind of railing and regularly offer a raised perspective of the property on which they sit. Decks might be worked off of the lower floor of a home, for example, the parlor or kitchen, or they may be added to an upper level room or even on a housetop setting.

Pleasantries and Use

How you expect to utilize your deck or yard is a central point in deciding comforts for either. There are an extensive variety of courtesies that can be added to possibly one with some plan contemplations considered for each.

While it is regular to have fire pits as well as implicit barbecues on a yard, these components can be a piece of a deck configuration also with outline and wellbeing contemplations considered by the expert deck planner and building group. Hot tubs and spas are reasonable amusement for either a deck or a porch.

The same can be said for pools with a deck or porch encompassing it, however outline and material contemplations can influence solace and wellbeing contemplations. In spite of the fact that yards are by and large revealed as far as rooftops, current plans do frequently highlight trellises, pergolas, and gazebos. Decks can likewise highlight these covers.

Life expectancy, Costs, and Other Practical Considerations

At the point when ground planning, seepage, and development techniques are done appropriately and to elevated requirements, decks and porches can have equivalent life expectancies with yards likely having the edge. Contingent upon the atmosphere and upkeep, decks can last somewhere in the range of 15 to 25 years or more with wood decks on the lower end and top notch composites on the upper end.

Porches can last upwards of 20 to 30 years, but at the same time are influenced by atmosphere. Solid patios can split and hurl as the consequence of rehashed solidifying and defrosting, much the same as whatever other poured solid, which may require fixing. While pavers can likewise split the individual spots can be all the more effectively supplanted. Contingent upon the plan, porches can be more affordable than decks, however this relies on upon various elements, for example, materials, estimate, and the civilities among others. Both decks and patios give a decent ROI to mortgage holders regarding added esteem and claim to purchasers.

As should be obvious, the decision between a deck and porch depends on various critical contemplations. Today, numerous property holders pick a blend of both to suit the way they need to engage and utilize their open air space to its fullest. The objective is to have an open air condition that matches the way you need to live and appreciate the outside.

How to Make the Most of Your Backyard this Summer

How to Make the Most of Your Backyard this Summer

Summer is a great time to get outside and enjoy the sunshine. But having a dingy or vapid backyard will discourage you from spending time outside, even in the best of weather conditions. If you, like most other people, prefer spending your time in spaces that are inspiring to you, a backyard that doesn’t reflect your personality will be an immediate turn-off from getting out and enjoying the summer sun. So why not dedicate this summer to creating a cozy reading spot or family area in your backyard? By improving your space backyard space, you’re almost sure to get more from it.

Backyard Improvement Ideas

When you think of it, you’ll soon notice there’s a nearly endless amount of possibilities of things you can do to make your backyard a better place to relax during your free time. But unfortunately you’ll be somewhat limited in what you can do based on your budget and the size of your backyard. It’s also good to keep your family’s lifestyle in mind when making choices. For instance, there’s no sense in creating a barbecue area if no one in your family enjoys cooking outside.

But short list of improvement you can make to your backyard:

  • Swimming pools: You don’t need to add a big pool to your backyard, but if you believe this is something your family will regularly use, it’s a worthwhile investment.
  • Barbecue area: A barbecue area is a great addition to your backyard if you want to spend more family time outside, or if you want to invite friends over for an al fresco lunch at your place every now and then.
  • Fountain: Adding a fountain won’t give you anything new to do in your backyard, but the sound of running water is very tranquil. This makes a fountain a great choice for blocking out noise, and so it can certainly make your backyard a better place to relax with a book.
  • Bird feeder or bath: A bird feeder or bath is a reasonably cheap project that can help you bring more nature into your backyard.
  • Low maintenance plants: If the problem with your backyard is that your garden is uninspiring, it could be worthwhile to look into some low maintenance garden ideas. Not all flowers and plants require a lot of care, and it’s definitely possible to create a beautiful garden without having to spend all your free time maintaining it.
  • Herb gardens: Herbs are very low maintenance plants that smell wonderful and often look beautiful too – just think of red basil or lavender, for instance. But a herb garden (either potted or on the ground) is a great way to get more out of your backyard if you enjoy cooking.
  • Crushed stone beds: A great way to fill bland areas in your garden without the use of plants is to create garden beds with crushed stone and place a few low maintenance potted plants in certain areas for accents. This creates a kind of Zen feeling that’s tranquil and adds personality without requiring too much from you.
  • Trees: You won’t reap the rewards of this straight away, but if you have a big backyard with no trees in it, planting one or two can make a huge different in the long-run. Just remember to do your research and choose a species that’s suitable to your needs.

While there are plenty of other things you could do to improve your backyard, these simple ideas should have you brainstorming some possibilities for your own backyard already.

Your Leisure Area

Most backyard improvements you can make won’t mean much if there’s no space for you to simply sit back and relax while enjoying them. So to get the most out of your backyard, you should definitely have a seating area where you can read a book, enjoy a meal or simply soak in the sunlight from time to time.

Here are some of the things to consider for your own seating area:

  • Deck or patio: Decks look nice and create a very welcoming feeling. A deck or patio is also the perfect place to place any outdoor furniture, like chairs and a table for an outside dining and relaxing area, or pool loungers with side tables to relax with a drink.
  • Seating: Of course you need seating to fully enjoy your backyard, but what many homeowners don’t realize is that it doesn’t have to be expensive garden furniture. You could simply dry stack concrete blocks and place a yoga mat, or a foam camping mattress covered in upholstering material on the stack. To finish this off, you could add some scatter pillows in colors that fit your theme.
  • Shading: If the sun is very harsh in your backyard, it’s always great to add some shading to your leisure area so you can still enjoy the outside without getting burned.

All of these things are good to have if you want your outdoor leisure area to be enjoyable.

Building a Deck or Patio

If you don’t know the first thing about installing a deck or patio, learning to build one will likely take all summer. If you would like to improve your backyard with a deck or patio, but you have no idea how to build it yourself, feel free to call Chimney Sweeps West.

Chimney Sweeps West can help with your installation of a deck or patio; taking away the stress of a project and allowing you to skip right to enjoying the weather, and your backyard, all summer long.

Issues Damp Chimneys Can Cause in Your Home

There’s nothing like a crackling chimney on a frosty winter night to unite the family and remove the chill. Also, there’s nothing like smokestack issues, which are sadly very normal, to disrupt a life and lead to potentially big damage and expenses down the line. One chimney problem that shows up a lot is dampness. Here’s what you need to know about it.

What are pieces of information that you have a damp chimney?

Signs that you may have (or soon will have) a moisture issue with your chimney include a leaky attic or roof in the general area of the chimney, and/or a flue that has water running down it. Issues like this won’t leave all on their own and must be tended to at the earliest opportunity.

Remember that overabundant dampness in a fireplace doesn’t simply “happen.” There’s an explanation behind it, regardless of the possibility that you’re not mindful of it. A broke fireplace crown, for instance, can let in rain water. This is a genuinely basic event in more established homes worked before the 1980s, yet even more up to date homes are inclined to this issue, especially if the smokestack and chimney framework have gone years without standard, careful examination by professionals prepared in this teach.

Chimneys operated without a secure, properly functioning chimney cap, which is designed to block water from rain and melting snow, also will lead to trouble. Protective flashing around the chimney that’s deteriorated with age is yet another way for moisture to get into the chimney.

Be proactive and settle the issue quick

Since water and dampness are ruinous powers to smokestacks, it’s imperative to distinguish the reason for the issue at the earliest opportunity. You might have the capacity to do this without anyone’s help, or you may require the guide of an expert fireplace clear. In any case, it should be finished. Gotten early, smokestack dampness issues frequently are fixable without unreasonable cost. Permitted to advance, the cost of repair or finish modify can be high.

More imperative than cost of repairing a smokestack is the security of the general population who live in your home. The greater part of house flames originate from issues with chimneys and smokestacks. At the point when a smokestack liner or the blocks and mortar utilized as a part of the stack’s development are bargained, extreme warmth effortlessly can achieve neighboring building materials that are not planned to be fireproof. The outcome isn’t something anybody needs to understanding.

Get Your Chimney Waterproofed

Like any other part of your home, your chimney needs care every once in a while. Many homeowners don’t give their chimney much thought. They just allow it to deteriorate and accumulate dirt. But eventually this kind of neglect can prove to be a serious health hazard. Your chimney can get damaged in a variety of ways – one of the more common ways being cracks in the chimney. But you should also have your chimney checked for water damage. As water damage can be very harmful to your chimney.

How Can Water Damage Your Chimney?

If your chimney isn’t properly waterproofed, it won’t be safe to use. Water damage can cause a lot of problems with your chimney. That’s because large parts of your chimney are made from materials like steel, which will rust if it’s exposed to water.

If you never have your chimney inspected, now would be a great time to get in touch with a local chimney sweep service. Professional chimney sweeps will be able to check for any water damage in your chimney. If there’s damage, it’s always best to locate the source of the problem and have it fixed. Once you’ve fixed the source of the problem, you can have your chimney fixed without having to worry about your fixed chimney getting damaged again by the same source of water damage.

Water damage to your chimney can cause your damper to rust, as well as potentially causing problems with water penetration in your walls. If that’s the case, you might even see mold grow on your walls near the fireplace, and the wallpaper of paint might lift because of the dampness in the wall.

Mold in your house is terrible for your health, so it’s always best to have any problems fixed that can cause your walls to rot.

Mold and Your Health

Mold is primarily linked to respiratory problems. So if you or one of your loved ones suffer from asthma, or if you tend to have other problems, like coughs, wheezing or a stuffy nose, mold is a likely culprit in your home.

For people who are more allergic to it, mold can also cause skin problems like rashes. Needless to say, the health problems associated with mold in your home is no fun.

To prevent mold from growing in your home, you should have any leaks – like roof leaks or broken pipes fixed as soon as possible. If your chimney is the problem, then you’ll be able to fix the problem by calling a chimney sweep and having your chimney fixed.

It’s important that you have any leaks fixed as soon as possible, as leaving them could cause your walls to get soaked, leading to more water damage than if you had the problem fixed soon after it was discovered. Once you walls, chimney and roof have water damage, the wet parts (or the badly rusted bits) will all have to be replaced. You can’t leave any area of your walls wet and hope that it will dry out, as you’re leaving a potential breeding ground for more mold to grow. And once the mold starts to grow again, it can be very difficult to control.

Things you can do to prevent mold from growing in your home include:

  • Keeping humidity levels low.
  • Thoroughly drying out any areas, like carpets, after they got wet.
  • Properly ventilating areas that are often humid, like the shower and the area above the stove or kettle in your kitchen.

The health problems associated with mold might seem insignificant to you, but mold-related allergies shouldn’t be taken lightly. Your respiratory system is a vital part of your health, and chronic exposure to mold can take its toll on your health.

Apart from this, your house is likely to smell damp and unpleasant if you leave water damaged areas without fixing them promptly.

Staying Safe Next Winter

Let’s face it, you don’t want to think about winter yet. It feels like things are only just starting to heat up, so why worry about the winter? There’s still a lot of time before then.

Fact is, springtime is great for getting your chimney inspected before winter this year. That’s because it’s the ideal season to do all kinds of outdoor maintenance tasks. The temperature isn’t too extreme, which often helps for certain parts of the maintenance work.

Getting your chimney inspected in spring also allows a lot of time before winter, so if there are still problems after your chimney is fixed, there will be time to get your chimney ready before winter.

Remember to use a chimney cap to avoid water damage through your chimney. Chimney caps are also great for preventing birds from making nests in your chimney. This is very important because the nests can actually catch fire whenever you use your chimney, and this can lead to a chimney fire.

Apart from this, you should have your chimney inspected annually to see that it’s still ready for each coming winter. Chimney inspections from professional sweeps aren’t cheap, but your chimney has a very important role to play in keeping your house safe. Without the proper care, it’s better to refrain from using your chimney, as you can never be too safe when working with any area in your house that uses fire.