Sweeping class A chimney from the bottom

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Rob_Red

Feeling the Heat
Feb 2, 2021
292
Southern New England
Planning to sweep my class A through the wall setup from the ground going up through the T.

is it possible to do a 100% thorough job this way? Will a soot eater or brush adequately clear out the rain cap?

I *really* don’t want to go in the roof.
 

gthomas785

Minister of Fire
Feb 8, 2020
503
Central MA
I've done this before, I usually try to bang the end of the sooteater into the cap a few times (without dislodging it, obviously)
It will depend on what kind of cap you have and how gunky the accumulation.
I say try it and then get out your binoculars to see how clean the cap is.
 

Highbeam

Minister of Fire
Dec 28, 2006
19,173
Mt. Rainier Foothills, WA
All of us that use the sooteater from below, including the professionals that use a similar device think it’s great and thorough.

on the cap I definitely let it spin there a bit longer and also reverse the rotation to get a lot more. The whips do a great job.

No getting on the roof anymore unless for other things.

Trouble is that the cap really gets seized on there after years of never removing it.
 
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snaple4

Feeling the Heat
Dec 18, 2017
284
AR
When going from below, how do you keep clean? I tried taping a bag around the pipe, used some tape on the bag for the hole (to keep the hole from widening) and used a rag at the hole on the pole. Black everywhere, especially when adding poles. Previously I would go top down.
 

gthomas785

Minister of Fire
Feb 8, 2020
503
Central MA
When going from below, how do you keep clean? I tried taping a bag around the pipe, used some tape on the bag for the hole (to keep the hole from widening) and used a rag at the hole on the pole. Black everywhere, especially when adding poles. Previously I would go top down.
I clean one of my liners through a T behind the stove. I shove the vacuum in through the stove damper so it's sitting right at the T. The vacuum catches the fine dust and the big chunks land on the floor where I can sweep them up.
 

MongoMongoson

Member
Feb 6, 2021
166
Wisconsin
Use some level of care when you are spinning your soot eater in the cap. Try to gently identify where your "top" is before giving it too much spin and push. I go through two 45's and a cleanout T in the stove pipe before I get to the Class A. I clean it all through the stove. I take the cleanout cap off the T and tie a bag on that. No holes in the bag since I'm coming into the cleanout T through the stove pipe.

I drape an old sheet or blanket over the stove opening. I wrap another one around the base of the stove pipe at the stove top. I have also used plastic sheeting over the front of the stove with a slit cut in it, but I prefer to use something that is washable/reusable.

The reason I say be careful is that one time (last week) I was able to get the soot eater rubber ball to sneak past the cap and come out the top. It took some doing and some acrobatics to resolve that situation, because there was NO way I was going to get that ball back through the cap without wrecking something.

I now marked my poles so I KNOW when I'm at the top. It was hard to "feel" the cap from 20-something feet below after going through all those bends.

I have a Selkirk cap like this:
1631803797431.png
 

barnaclebob

Feeling the Heat
Nov 29, 2017
270
Puget Sound
When going from below, how do you keep clean? I tried taping a bag around the pipe, used some tape on the bag for the hole (to keep the hole from widening) and used a rag at the hole on the pole. Black everywhere, especially when adding poles. Previously I would go top down.

Cut a hole in a 1 gallon bucket the same diameter as the soot eater shaft. Cuts 4 slits radiating from the hole that you can push the fittings through. tape the bucket to the ceiling and more tape around the hole in the bottom. Tape plastic to the wall and drape it over the stove. This keeps things pretty clean. If I wanted to get fancy, Id figure out how to add a shop vac into the system.
 
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