Home Saver Chimney Sweeps is a member of the National Chimney Sweep Guild and National Fire Protection AssociationHome Saver Chimney Sweeps is a member of the National Chimney Sweep Guild and National Fire Protection Association Home Saver Chimney Sweeps is a member of the National Chimney Sweep Guild and National Fire Protection Association


Home Saver Chimney Sweeps - Frequently Asked Questions


Home Saver Chimney Sweeps of Catawissa, PA - FAQ

Note: Content contained within our f.a.q. section is by no means to be considered an exhaustive discourse on the causes and remedies for the topics discussed, and is intended to address only the most commonly encountered issues as dealt with on a daily basis. Please contact us for a thorough on-site evaluation for a specific issue not addressed here.

  • What determines the need for chimney relining? Open or Close
    In the chimney and venting industry, the National Fire Protection Association 211 Code is the standard of practice.
    Chapter 13.9 "Damaged or Deteriorated Liners" states that "If the flue liner in a chimney has softened, cracked or otherwise deteriorated so that it no longer has the continued ability to contain the products of combustion (i.e., heat, moisture, creosote and flue gasses) the liner shall be either removed and replaced, repaired, or relined with a listed liner system or other approved material that will resist corrosion, softening or cracking from the flue gasses at temperatures appropriate to the class of chimney service".
    Upon cleaning and conducting a level 1 inspection of your chimney flue we will advise you if any defects are found and if possible, point them out to you so you can see for yourself. Then, within 24 hrs, we will provide you with a written estimate to correct the defects. 
  • What are the three levels of chimney inspection? Open or Close
    The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA)’s 211 (Standard for Chimneys, Fireplaces, Vents, and Solid Fuel Burning Appliances) is the standard upon which Certified Chimney Professionals base their services. This new standard now classifies chimney and venting system inspections into three levels—Level 1, Level 2, or Level 3. Each level of inspection has a specific scope of work and specific criteria.

    Level 1 Inspection
    This inspection is recommended when the chimney and venting system is easily accessible and when the homeowner is planning to maintain its current use. In general, this is the level of inspection performed in most homes. In a Level 1 inspection, a certified chimney sweep verifies that the chimney structure is sound and that the chimney is free of obstructions and combustible deposits, such as creosote.

    Level 2 Inspection
    The addition of a new home heating appliance or a change in the type of fuel a homeowner is burning requires a Level II inspection. This inspection level is also required upon the sale or transfer of a property or after an operating malfunction or external event that is likely to have caused damage to the chimney. The scope of a Level 2 inspection includes that of the Level 1 inspection plus the inspection of accessible portions of the attics, crawl spaces, and basements. It may also include a performance test such as a smoke test or a pressure test, and possibly an interior chimney video inspection if recommended by the certified chimney sweep.

    Level 3 Inspection
    When a Level 1 or Level 2 inspection suggests a hidden hazard and the evaluation cannot be performed without access to concealed areas, a Level 3 inspection is recommended. This type of inspection confirms the proper construction and condition of concealed portions of the chimney structure and the flue. Level 3 inspections are generally necessary when investigating an incident that has caused damage to a chimney or building, or where a hazard is detected and suspected.

    The National Fire Protection Association recommends annual chimney inspections to help prevent fires and carbon monoxide poisonings.
  • How much can I expect to pay for a chimney sweep service call and what will I get for the money? Open or Close
    Prices for professional chimney service's vary regionally, and in some areas seasonally but range from around $95.00 to well over $200.00. Our sweep service is competitively priced based upon the region we serve and always includes a level 1 inspection. This price only applies to a "normal" chimney service on a chimney which has been serviced annually. Not servicing annually is dangerous and may be a bit more expensive due to the amount of soot and debris involved.
    If the appliance is a wood burning fireplace insert which does not have a positive connection to the flue (per NFPA 211 guidlines) we will not pull the insert to service the flue and will advise you in writing that such an appliance installation is not up to current code and is unsafe / unfit for use. The full service charge will still apply. Also, if we have to remove more than 5 gallons of soot / ash / debris from the system being serviced there is an additional charge.
    What you get for the money: The homeowner is responsible for removing all ash and debris from any wood burning appliance or fireplace prior to our arrival.  We then sweep the flue, remove and clean any connector pipes (4' max) and sweep the interior of a wood burning appliance (boilers, stokers and furnaces excluded). Fireplace service includes brushing the firebox walls, base, smoke chamber, damper door and vacuming the smoke shelf. 
    We then conduct a thorough level 1 inspection of all the components of these systems, correct any minor defect issues and bring any potential or current problems to your attention right away. We will do all of this without leaving a trace of dirt on your floor or anywhere in your home.
    While you may find someone who will charge less for a "sweep", please keep in mind that's probably all your getting (if that). Beware of these companies offering a sweep for $49.95 and or "free" chimney inspections at County Fair's and such. No one can make an honest living operating a legal and properly insured sweep company doing things like this. These people are refered to as "Chimney Scammer's" in this industry and there's a LOT of them out there!
    You usually get what you pay for so before hiring anyone to service your chimney, you may want to ask them if they are a full time Certified Chimney Professional, are fully licensed and insured, are aware of the current NFPA 211 code guidelines and are using the latest tools and technology to perform their work, safely, efficiently and cleanly while on your property. Our goal is to be the best at what we do, not the cheapest. Also search for online reviews of any business you are considering.
    A faulty chimney can be costly and even deadly. Don’t trust chimney safety to just anybody. Insist on hiring only Certified Chimney Sweeps and Certified Chimney Reliners!
  • How often should I have my chimney swept and inspected and what will you be looking for? Open or Close
    Per the NFPA 211 guidelines, all chimneys should be cleaned and inspected at least once each year. When conducting the inspection we will be checking for things like proper clearances to combustibles, evidence of any deterioration, cracks or gaps in the appliance, the thimble area, flue, connector pipes, chimney crown and the exterior masonry structure.
    We will document in writing and with digital photography any safety or structural issues we discover, bring these to your attention, make recommendations we feel are appropriate and without pressure, allow you, the customer to make any final decisions concerning any needed repairs or modifications.
    We highly recommend having a level 2 chimney inspection preformed when purchasing a home or when changing or adding a new heating appliance. This inspection involves video scaning the flue in addition to the level 1 inspection.
  • I just had my oil or gas furnace serviced... Open or Close
    ...and when the technician pulled the connector pipe from the chimney, there was a lot of orange flue tile debris or masonry debris in the pipe and the base of the chimney mixed in with the usual soot. What would cause this?
    The clay flue tile lining or interior of your unlined chimney is being destroyed by the acids produced by the combustion process. This will continue to get worse and can eventually cause a chimney blockage to occur putting you and your family at risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. The most cost effective, permanent solution to the problem is to have a high quality stainless steel chimney re-lining system installed by a professional chimney service provider. This can usually be done in a day and if installed properly, will be a permanent solution to the problem.  See what is happening inside your chimney here...
  • My house fills with smoke when I start a fire in my fireplace or stove. What causes this... Open or Close
    ...and how can I resolve it?
    Several factors come into play with this scenario. Here are some tips which may alleviate the problem: First and foremost, be sure there are no mechanical exhaust devices running in the house. Clothes dryers, kitchen range hood fans and bathroom exhaust fans all create a negative pressure, or vacuum in the home. When this happens, the makeup air will tend to rush down the chimney in order to equalize the pressure which will cause a very unpleasant experience!
    You may also have a problem lighting a solid fuel burning appliance if there is already one burning on another floor. Example: A fireplace can remove approximately 500 cu ft of air per minute from the living space as it burns, creating a vacuum (or negative pressure) in the home. If you have a fire going on the first floor in the fireplace and have a wood stove in the basement not being used, the smoke from the fireplace flue could be drawn down the adjacent woodstove flue and into the basement as “makeup air” unless the air can enter the dwelling elsewhere (as through a slightly open window).
    In many older homes which are usually drafty due to a lack of insulation and old single pane windows this was usually not an issue, but in today’s modern “tight” homes, this can be a real problem. If you have smoke when trying to start a fire in your fireplace, opening a window a few inches is a good idea. Also try using a hair dryer to pre-heat the flue then starting out with a very small fire and gradually build up to a hot fire. This will assure a warm flue and a proper draft which should eliminate the dreaded "smoky fireplace". Once the flue is warm enough to cause a good up-draft, you should be fine, but you may still need to always have a window slightly cracked in a “tight” home in order to keep from having a smoke issue.
  • Is it really necessary to have a cap on a chimney? Open or Close
    Having a rain cap installed on your chimney is perhaps the simplest, most affordable thing you can do to protect the chimney flue from blockages, animals and the environment. Yes, every chimney needs a cap!
    In addition to our professional grade stainless steel lifetime warrantied chimney caps, we also offer a wide selection of custom caps in almost any design and material you can imagine. Please contact us for more information or a free, no obligation on-site evaluation!
  • Can you provide me with any references? Open or Close
    Unlike many corporate giants who like to advertise that customer satisfaction is their #1 goal but don’t quite deliver, we really mean it!
    We are a small family owned and operated American business. Founded in 2009 we now have over 2000 customers on the books and have installed hundreds of stainless steel chimney relining systems and many class-A pre-fab stainless steel chimney's.  When you deal with Home Saver Chimney Sweeps & Stove Sales, LLC  you are dealing with the owner's, not just an employee so you have the assurance that whether you require a normal chimney service, a chimney reline or a partial rebuild, your project will be done correctly, on time and at an affordable cost with no mess left behind when we are finished.
    In addition to browsing some examples of our work in the gallery section of this website, you can also find many personal references online at Angie's List, Manta, YP.com,  Merchant Circle and of course Google!
  • Why should I use a Certified Chimney Professional™ and not the guy down the street... Open or Close
    ...who's been cleaning it for years?
    Why for a minute would you even consider using an individual who has not proven that they know what they are doing? If the certified chimney sweeps are all charging around $150.00 and some guy with an old ladder & a few brushes on his truck is only charging $45.00, you will get what you pay for.
    There is a reason to use a Certified Chimney Professional™ and that is PROVEN knowledge and expertise.
    It’s your home, it’s your safety at stake. It’s also your choice. Don’t compromise, only use:
    • Certified Chimney Professionals™ for inspections and cleaning of your chimney.
    • Certified Chimney Reliners™ if your chimney needs a liner or if you are installing a new heating appliance.
  • What is a Certified Master Chimney Technician™? Open or Close
    A Certified Master Chimney Technician™ is an individual who has completed the Certified Chimney Professionals™ training program and has been in the chimney service trade for at least 8 years. They have studied the most current rules, methods, codes and standards and have proven proficiency by passing professional level testing. Additionally, they have committed to our Code of Conduct. Its one thing to have a chimney sweep at your home, its quite another thing to have a Certified Master Chimney Technician™ at your home. You can rest assured that they have a professional level grasp of the knowledge needed to serve you properly.
  • What is a Certified Chimney Reliner™? Open or Close
    A Certified Chimney Reliner™ is an individual who has completed the Certified Chimney Professionals™ & the Certified Chimney Reliners™ training program. They have studied the most current rules, methods, codes and standards and have proven proficiency by passing professional level testing. They are familiar with all the common forms of chimney relining, when it is needed and which types of Relines are appropriate for each situation. Additionally, they have committed to our Code of Conduct. Its one thing to have a chimney reliner at your home, its quite another thing to have a Certified Chimney Reliner™ at your home. You can rest assured that they have a professional level grasp of the knowledge needed to serve you properly.
  • What about pets? Open or Close

    In the interest of our safety as well as that of your pets, we ask that if you have any pets living in your home, (especially protective, aggressive or overly curious dogs) that they be isolated in another room or somewhere away from the work area or anywhere we may have to be as we are servicing your chimney.

    Dogs can bite, be stepped on, tripped over and possibly injured as the tools and materials we are dealing with while servicing your chimney can be very dangerous. Cats are curious creatures and always get in the way while we are trying to perform our work.

    Also as we will need to be going in and out of your home while servicing your chimney we can not be expected to make sure your pet doesn't get out. Again, it's best to have any pets isolated until we are completely finished. We appreciate your understanding in this matter.

  • When is the best time to have my chimney serviced? Open or Close

    We suggest having your chimney and heating appliance serviced as soon the heating season is over for several reasons.

    1. It will help to eliminate those nasty creosote odors you may sometimes experience from a fireplace or wood stove chimney.

    2. If your chimney happens to be in need of any type of repair you have all summer to schedule and have this done so your ready for the next heating season.

    3. If you heat with coal, it is critical that the connector pipes be disconnected and cleaned as soon as possible after shutting it down as well as thoroughly cleaning the inside of the stove. Flyash is a bi product of the combustion process of coal and contains sulfuric acid. This ash which will draw moisture then turn to mud. This will drastically reduce the lifespan of anything metalic it comes in contact with.

    4. Waiting until the fall to call a chimney professional will cause you to have to "get in line" as it is the habit of most people to wait until the cold weather hits to call us. This naturally causes a back log and you may have to wait six weeks or more for us to fit you into our fall schedule.

  • If I buy a stove elsewhere will you install it? Open or Close

    We will only install new EPA complaint wood burning stoves that we sell. Installing a free standing wood stove will require a chimney inspection at the current rate in order to determine if the chimney is safe to use. We no longer sell or install wood burning fireplace inserts. Please contact us for pricing details and be advised that we only service those units which are sold and installed by us.


  • What about metal roofs? Open or Close

    If your home has a newer metal roof and we are not able to access the chimney from the side of the house we will not be able to do any work from above without the use of an aerial lift. In most cases we can service the chimney from the bottom but any cap installations or relining would involve the use of a lift with the added expense. Trying to work on a newer metal roof is like trying to climb up a sliding board. Not only is it far more dangerous than working on a shingled roof but the paint can be easily scratched using any ladders or tools up there so we simply don't do it. If you are considering having a metal roof installed, please contact us first if the chimney needs any work. You'll want to have this done prior to having the roof installed.


  • We provide free repair estimates for known chimney defects (Real Estate transactions excluded) 
  • We are fully certified, licensed & insured
  • We provide prompt, clean, professional service, every time!
  • Your heating company does not clean & inspect your chimney
  • We sell and install a wide range of affordable, high quality wood stoves 

Chimney Products

We proudly install Copperfield Chimney Supply products   Made in the USA !