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Chimney cleaning safety

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by mattjm1017, Sep 6, 2013.

  1. mattjm1017

    mattjm1017 Feeling the Heat

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    Corapeake NC
    I have a 21' tall exterior chimney and Im getting ready to clean it and have some questions. I can clean from the bottom up but would like to get up to the top and clean the cap and screen so here's my question. I don't have a ladder tall enough to get to the top. I do have a ladder that can get me to the roof and from there the chimney is another 10 or so feet up. Is it ok to lean the ladder from the roof to the top of the chimney? Are there any safety concerns here or things I should look out for? Also am I just over thinking this whole thing should I forget about going up top and just do a bottom up cleaning and be done with it?

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  2. WellSeasoned

    WellSeasoned Guest

    My roof is mostly flat where my chimney comes out, so the ladder sits flush. I pesonally would not lean a ladder on the chimney to clean it. Lets see what others have done.....
  3. NortheastAl

    NortheastAl Minister of Fire

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    Putnam, NY
    There are times it is better to call a chimney sweep. This may be one of them. It isn't worth risking injury or death by using a ladder against a chimney. JMO
    Beer Belly and webby3650 like this.
  4. webby3650

    webby3650 Master of Fire

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    For a situation like this some kinda special ladders are needed. No a must I guess but better. I lean ladders against chimneys almost everyday. I use a single section of an extension ladder that has leg levelers and rubber feet. Unless that chimney is seriously de-lapitated, there is no real issue here. It outweighs you be a thousand pounds or more.

    You could clean it from the bottom and just inspect the cap with a set of binoculars.
    mattjm1017 and NortheastAl like this.
  5. NortheastAl

    NortheastAl Minister of Fire

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    Putnam, NY
    I use binos to check mine. Works great.
  6. mattjm1017

    mattjm1017 Feeling the Heat

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    Corapeake NC
    I can look at it with binos but what if I need to do something to it? I gather its ok to lean a ladder against the chimney but maybe not necessarily from the roof it would be better to do it from the ground.
  7. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    The pitch of a roof makes it real hard to lean a ladder level against a chimney. Unless you have leveling legs on the ladder.

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