Essex County Fire and Rescue Service


It is time to get your chimney ready for colder weather

Essex County Fire and Rescue Service is recommending residents with open fires and log burners plan ahead for colder weather and get chimneys swept and inspected before winter.

The Fire Service usually sees a spike in chimney fires in colder weather. By taking simple steps to clean and inspect your chimney ahead of winter, Essex residents can reduce the risk of a fire in their home.

Station Manager Nick Singleton from Essex County Fire and Rescue Service said: “Most chimney fires are preventable. Whether you have a chimney at home or one in your workplace, you can make sure your chimney is ready for colder weather by having it swept at least once a year by a suitable tradesperson. They will issue you a certificate for your insurance company.

“Having your chimney swept regularly can prevent a build up of soot which can become a fire hazard. It’s also good to have your chimney inspected regularly to make sure there’s no damage to any part of your burner and flue. Throughout the year, check your chimney in the loft for any signs of cracks or corrosion.

“If you have a wood burner, we recommend that you have a carbon monoxide alarm within the room to give you any early warning to carbon monoxide. And make sure your smoke alarms on every level are tested once a week.”

The Fire Service recommends you have your chimney ready to use before you need it.

Nick adds: “The cold weather will creep up quickly and we recommend you plan ahead now to make sure you’re ready to use your chimney when you need it.

“Now is also a good time to think about your fuel for winter and to make sure any logs you plan to use are suitably seasoned. Never burn damp wood.

“Make sure you have suitable fuels for your open fire or log burner. Using the wrong type of fuel on a liner will reduce the life of the liner considerably due to increased corrosion

For more chimney fire safety advice, visit:

Page last updated 30 August, 2022

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