How much do you charge?
Check out the Chimney Services page for prices.
When can you come?
Depends on the time of year and on how much demand there is for our services at the moment. Between September and February are our busiest months, and we usually need to schedule appointments in advance. We offer Preferred Customer discounts in the spring between April 1st and June 30th. This is a very seasonal business, so we also take time to recover and do other work in the summer.
Where do you provide service?
Our area covers from Peachland to Winfield and up to Joe Rich.
Are your people WETT Certified? What does that mean?
Yes, absolutely, we are fully Certified through WETT, (Wood Energy Technology Transfer of Canada). WETT is the only recognized certification and education body in this industry in Canada. That means we are recognized by insurance companies and the government of Canada as being properly trained and experienced. WETT requires a minimum number of hours in the field be completed, as well as training courses and exams to be completed before they will certify someone. It is not mandatory in our industry to be trained or certified. WETT is a program we have chosen to be a part of in order to help our industry become more regulated and accountable.
What does my insurance company mean when they say I need a “WETT Inspection”?
It’s a bit misleading – it has nothing to do with water, that’s for sure! A WETT Inspection is an evaluation of your existing wood burning system, and a comparison of it against the most recent Building Code, Fire Code, and Solid Fuel Appliance and Equipment Installation Code. So, a WETT trained Inspector will visually assess the existing installation, and determine whether or not it is compliant with current Codes. That is what gives the system a “pass” or a “fail” – whether or not it is “Code compliant”.
Why does every local chimney sweep seem to have a different price for a basic sweep?
Because every chimney sweep in our area is providing a different service. There is really no regulation of this industry, and consequently, “professional chimney sweeps” can be anyone from an inexperienced fly-by-night with a magnetic sign on the side of his truck, to a truly experienced and skilled tradesman with specialized tools and equipment. I can’t say how anyone else in the valley comes up with their pricing, but we have determined our prices based on our time, expenses, and the fact that we wish to continue on in this business year after year. We want our customers to have a sweep for life – not a sweep who disappears. We offer a thorough, expert service, and we care about your safety.
How often does a chimney need cleaning?
Every homeowner has different burning habits, so every system is different. Technically, the BC Fire Code requires that every wood burning system be inspected annually, and cleaned as “often as necessary” (this is defined as when the chimney has 1/8″ thick deposits or more). Most home insurance companies follow the BC Fire Code requirements. For our customers, we do a very thorough cleaning and evaluation the first visit, and one season after that we return to assess how often the system needs to be cleaned, based on the use and burning habits over one season. A general rule of thumb, with average use, would be once a year.
Why should I get my chimney cleaned in the spring?
This will identify any problems early enough to make decisions and repairs before the next heating season begins. We prefer to clean the chimney before moisture from rain can mix with the soot and creosote to form acids that eat away at the chimney structure. This also eliminates the sour, acrid odour that the fireplace can have over the summer. And of course, we are usually booked up for weeks in the fall, so if we can do a visit in our slower time of year, we can give you a discount!
How do I stop my fireplace from smoking back into the room?
There’s no easy answer to this one, unfortunately. Back drafting can be caused by many things, none of which are quickly remedied. The best idea is to have our technician troubleshoot the system and come up with some solutions.
What should I do after I have a chimney fire?
Call a WETT certified chimney professional to clean and assess the damage to the chimney. The chimney fire may have caused damage to the system, and it may no longer be intact and functional.
Why should I install a raincap/animal guard on my chimney?
Raincaps are important to keep out rain and moisture from penetrating the masonry, to keep all unwanted guests (birds, squirrels, raccoons, etc) out of the chimney, and to keep sparks from leaving the chimney and igniting nearby combustibles.
What causes excessive creosote buildup?
There are many factors that can contribute to nasty creosote buildup. Poor burning habits, such as burning wet or unseasoned wood, burning trash or coloured shiny papers, or severely damping the stove down to get a longer burn. Using an outdated stove, which was manufactured before the newer emissions standards were in effect. Inexperienced installations, where the system is not running the way it was designed to. Neglecting proper maintenance of the chimney and appliance. Set up an appointment with one of our technicians to assess the problem and come up with potential solutions.