The Chimney Pro Blog

Why does my fireplace smell?

There are many different odors associated with a fireplace depending on the time of year. Most of us think of winter, that pleasant smell of the fire, you hear the crackling of the wood and you know Christmas is right around the corner. On the other end of the scale its summer time, it feels 50,000 degrees outside and a million percent humidity with afternoon thunder showers, you get stinky fireplace with a hint of muskiness in the air and that dear fond memory of Christmas is long gone. There are a few different causes for stinky, smelly fireplaces and our experienced technicians at Chimney Pro can pinpoint the cause and make your summer more enjoyable. Here are a few of the most common problems associated with unpleasant smells coming from your fireplace.


The number one cause for a smelly fireplace is creosote. So, what is creosote? It’s a natural occurring by-product that is left behind from burning wood when the un-burned wood gases (IE: smoke) go up the flue and before exiting the top they cool and condense depositing on the inner walls of the chimney flue. These deposits are highly combustible and are fire hazards according to the Chimney Safety Institute of America. All it takes is the internal temperature of your flue to reach a certain degree for creosote to ignite and cause a chimney fire. At Chimney Pro our CSIA-certified technicians have been extensively trained, use the latest in technology and equipment to remove the creosote deposits inside your chimney, eliminate that odor coming from your fireplace, and aid in the prevention of a chimney fire.


Is the smell coming from your fireplace mildew or musty like an old basement that leaks but worse? Is there any sign of water that may be coming in when or after it rains? If you use your fireplace for burning wood in the winter and haven’t had it swept the smell can almost be unbearable in the summer months if there is water getting inside the flue. Not to mention the fact that when creosote is mixed with water it creates a super acidic slurry that can eat away at the inner flue and create even more problems. This is when I see a lot of fireplace openings covered with cardboard or plastic and taped up around the edges to try and mitigate the smell coming into the house. Mold growth can cause serious health problems and should be addressed immediately! It can cause chronic respiratory issues and seems to affect people with allergies, small children, pets and the elderly first but can affect anyone who has been exposed. Are you in Dalton, Georgia , Cartersville, Georgia, Fort Payne, Alabama, or surrounding areas? Call Chimney Pro at 256-845-9814 as soon as possible and have a CSIA-certified technician eliminate the source of the problem.


Sometimes animals make a new home out of your chimney and they can be anything from chimney swifts, squirrels, raccoons, bats, I’ve even seen ducks and owls make there way into the flue. Unfortunately, they are not welcome and need to go as they can carry a whole host of nasty diseases. The droppings they leave behind can leave an undesired smell and they may get trapped and die inside your flue which will require immediate attention once that smell penetrates your indoor living space. At Chimney Pro our CSIA-certified technicians are well experience in removing animal debris/dead animals effectively with HEPA vacuums and deodorizing agents that will eliminate the odor. We can also install caps with screen so these creatures will never be an issue again while keeping your chimney functional.

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