Archive for September, 2012

It brings home the reality that no house is safe from the ravages of fire. It is so important to have your chimneys cleaned before you start lighting fires, now that the temperatures have dropped Also if you have a stove installed, it is also very important to have your stove serviced so as any blockages , that may create the possibility of fire or Carbon Monoxide poisoning are eliminated..

Today I called to two different houses. Both of them have,coincidently , Villager wet stoves fitted. The first one had been cleaned last year and was a doddle. The second one had about three years deposits inside the stove while the chimney was almost totally blocked with Cresote. I at first thought that the reason my brush would not go any further than 3 rods was that there was a birds nest on board. So I withdrew the brush and placed the brush retrieval hook on so as to agitate the nest. Wow , massive lumps of cresote bombarded its way down. I proceeded to last liner and withdrew. I then placed the brush back on as there was no nestings and , hey, lost the brush. After some soul searching , retrieved the brush. The positives are that there was a well placed soot door and a very large soot trap below the flue entry to chimney. I filled a full 5 litre bucket of cresote lumps from the trap. This stove was fitted in a very small kitchen with no proper ventilation and the owner declined to fit a Carbon Monoxide alarm.

Last Friday I removed a Stovax Regency multi fuel stove, as there had been a chimney fire recently. I performed a CCTV investigation of the liners, (3 storey house) and discovered that from the entry liner to about 6 metres up the liners were completely clean and sound, however above that there was a lot of Cresote attached. The stack entered the roof at ceiling level on floor one , so quite an amount of stack was exposed. However, probably the reason that the Cresote was not burned off was  because of the quick action of the fire brigade in bringing it under control. I lightly applied our power cleaning flail to this area with much success. The CCTV was performed again to reveal a high level of success and a better view of the remaining liners , which were all in sound condition. A pressure test was carried out , with positive results.  The inglenook was re skimmed with heat resistant plaster, and the stove refitted successfully replacing the heat stressed 8″ flue with a similiar one with inspection eye. I left a CCL (chimney cleaning log) with the householder to use next week, to loosen any cresote that we may have been unable to remove. I also advised the lady of the house on proper fuels for use within her stove. I fitted a Fire Angel Carbon Monoxide alarm and also a Rain/Bird guard.

On a call out today to service two stoves and clean the chimneys, the owner told me that they were getting a terrible smell of soot each time they lit their Oisin stove. On investigation I found that the vertical flue , 5″ , was connected to a 90deg bend which did not make proper contact with the stove collar, and also was connected to the clay liner, 8″, by filling the space with fibreglass. Water which ingressed the liner was making its way down through the chimney filling and ending up on the stove top, causing rust. And all this after just 10 fires having been lit. What workmanship.

Stove servicing

Posted: September 17, 2012 in Stove Cleaning
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What a wonderful day Friday was. Three stoves to be serviced and three chimneys to be cleaned, all in the one bungalow. The upper baffle in the Stovax Riva 66 was the worst for wear and needs replacing. The brick panels suffering from a battering of logs. I pointed them out and advised the owner to be a little more gentle with the loading of firewood. He was all praise for the Riva 66. The Jotul woodburning stove did not experience the same intensity and other than a vertical crack on the fixed back brick , thinks were not so bad. The small Jotul in the granny flat was performing excellently.