Your chimney needs to be cleaned from time to time. The times that it needs to be cleaned depends on the type of fireplace and the fuel you use in your fireplace. For example, a natural gas fireplace is not a very dirty fireplace. This means that your chimney will only need to be cleaned probably once a year. However, if you burn a dirtier fuel, you’ll need to have it cleaned more often. That might be once before the winter and then again during the winter if you are using the fireplace consistently.
- Natural gas is a very clean-burning fuel that will likely not build up very much on your chimney.
- Hardwood tends to burn cleaner and produce less smoke than certain softwoods. Slow-growth softwood will burn clean except for pine woods.
- Pine woods, especially pinon, are known for their aromatic smoke. That comes from the burning of the sap. That sap produces creosote, though.
- Creosote buildup will need to be cleaned regularly.
If you use hardwood or a cleaner-burning softwood, creosote will not build up very quickly. However, creosote-producing woods are very popular. If you use them, you should just make sure to call chimney sweeps regularly. Pine wood with sap produces the most creosote but every type of wood produces some amount. It is acidic, which means that it will eat away at the brick and mortar of your chimney if it is not cleaned.