Fireplace servicing tips for wood-burning fireplaces

Servicing 101: How to Clean Your Wood Fireplace

Why not have the perfect fire every day of your life? You can with a wood fireplace. That being said, to keep that fire burning all season long, servicing your wood fireplace on a regular basis is important. Want to do it yourself? Our experts at The Fireplace Center and Patio Shop put together some tips so you can clean your wood fireplace yourself.

Servicing Your Wood Fireplace 

We’ve already discussed why it’s so important to get your fireplace serviced and how often to service your fireplace. But what’s involved in ‘fireplace servicing’ and how can you ensure a safe fireplace at home?

While wood fireplaces have that authentic, cozy quality, they require the most maintenance. All the soot and creosote from the burning wood make for a big mess.

A neglected wood fireplace isn’t just an eyesore – it’s also a safety hazard. If you have a wood fireplace, always follow these best practices to keep yourself safe.

  • Always clean ash from the fireplace once it reaches the bottom of the grate.
  • Burn only seasoned wood. Seasoned wood has been cut and dried for up to 12 months, so it burns better and creates less soot and creosote.
  • Leave it alone for at least two days before cleaning or servicing it – embers can stay alive for days!

Tools you’ll need to clean your wood fireplace:

  • A chimney brush 
  • Brush extension pipes
  • A small wire brush
  • A drop cloth or tarp to protect your floor
  • A broom and dustpan, or a shop vac 
  • Safety goggles
  • A mask
  • A ladder

How to Clean Your Wood Fireplace

  • Wear gloves, goggles, and a mask to protect yourself from the soot and creosote. 
  • Lay a drop cloth or a tarp around your floor and hearth to protect them from getting dirty.
  • Use a fireplace shovel to remove any burnt wood.
  • Remove the grate and shake off as much ash and debris as you can into the fireplace.
  • Use a brush and dustpan or a shop vac (different than a regular vacuum – shop vacs are designed explicitly for ash)
  • Because soot and creosote are flammable materials, you can’t just toss them in the garbage – check with your local waste laws to see what to do.
  • Attach your chimney brush with one section of the pipe extension, insert the brush into the chimney, scrub up and down along the interior walls starting from the top, and work your way down into the fireplace. You might need to measure your chimney to make sure you are reaching the top.
  • Clean the glass doors with a cloth and glass cleaner, or a mixture of water and vinegar
  • Clean your andirons and other fireplace tools with water and dish soap.
  • Once you’ve cleared away all the debris, it’s time to check for cracks, gaps, or white spots in the interior and exterior of your fireplace and chimney. If you notice any damage, call a professional.
  • Check your smoke detectors and carbon monoxide alarms to ensure they’re up to date and functioning correctly. 

Pro tip: Use the ash for your houseplants or your garden! It’s full of potassium, phosphorus, magnesium, and other nutrients that will make your plants happy!

For a more in-depth guide on how to clean your wood-burning fireplace, read our guide.

Trust Us for Your Next Wood Fireplace Servicing Appointment

Wood fireplace servicing

While we recommend cleaning your wood fireplace regularly to maintain the health and safety of your home, cleaning it yourself doesn’t replace getting it serviced by a professional. 

A professional will be able to spot any signs of deterioration or danger. While we have absolute faith in your ability to DIY, some things are best left to a professional.  

Fireplace Center services all types of fireplaces. So whatever you have, contact us today, and we’ll service your fireplace to ensure you and your family can safely enjoy a warm fire this winter.

Your Fireplace, BBQ & Patio Experts Since 1952

The Fireplace Center and Patio Shop is your one-stop-shop for all your indoor and outdoor essentials. With one of Canada’s largest showrooms, we have over 200 fireplaces on display. With extensive knowledge in BBQs, heating and cooling, and patio furniture, you can trust our team to provide expert advice, quality assembly and installation. Get in touch with us today.

Shopping Cart