8 Critical Steps to Prevent Chimney Fires

article-new-thumbnail-ehow-images-a01-ue-4k-clean-fireplace-800x800A fireplace that has build-up of creosote and soot is dangerous and a major source of chimney fires. Cleaning a fireplace is not a fun job, but it will help keep your house safe.

Follow these steps:

1. Remove large debris from the fireplace.
Put all debris that will not fit in a vacuum cleaner in a trash can.

2. Vacuum soot and ashes out of the fireplace.
Use a shop vacuum for the best results. A home vacuum will work, but this is tough work and will clog filters.

3. Lay a tarp on any carpeting near the fireplace.
Put newspaper on top of the tarp at the hearth and inside the fireplace.

4. Make a solution of one gallon warm water and one cup bleach.
Use a scrub brush and the water to scrub soot and creosote off the interior of the fireplace.

5. Throw the newspapers in the trash.
Wipe up any remaining water with old rags.

6. Clean the floor of the fireplace.
Use the same solution of water. Mop up the water with paper towels afterward and throw them away.

7. Clean fireplace grates outside.
Lay down several layers of newspaper and lay the grate on top. Use oven cleaner or bleach water to clean the grate.

8. Use glass cleaner and newspapers.
Clean glass fireplace doors and polish any exterior metal.