It’s important to know what you are doing if you plan on cleaning your chimney on your own. But it’s even more imperative that you have the proper tools and brushes. I will break down the basic brushes and necessities that you will need to help you through the chimney cleaning process.
The Flue Brush
The Flue brush is used to remove the most creosote from the walls of your chimney. Flue brushes come in many different shapes and sizes. They are available in round, square, oval, and rectangular shapes. They range in widths from 5” to 14”. You will be able to find a brush regardless of the size or shape of your chimney. Not only do brushes come in different sizes and shapes, but they also come in a variety of materials. The most common materials are wire brushes and polypropylene plastic.
Wire brushes are made from oil tempered steel. Wire brushes come in two types – flat and round. Flat brushes are stiff and work well because they will put more pressure against the walls of your chimney. Round brushes give average scraping on the interior of chimney walls.
Polypropylene brushes are softer than wires brushes and can be used for most chimney liners and metal chimneys. These brushes bristles are so soft that they will not scratch the inside of a metal chimney. The only negative aspect of poly brushes is that they do not scrape as well as wire brushes because their bristles are so soft.
Hand brushes are probably the most commonly used chimney tool. They are used to clean connectors, fireboxes, smoke chambers, chimney caps, and smoke shelves. They come in a number of different shapes and sizes. Wire brushes are usually available with attached scrapers for extra convenience. There are even hand brushes available that have softer bristles that are used for cleaning up soot and ash.
Chimney rods are used to push the chimney brush through the flue. You can attach multiple chimney rods together so that you can achieve the desired length for your chimney. They are available in a number of different materia ls such as fiberglass and polypropylene.
Polypropylene rods are the most commonly used rods because they are the most flexible of the bunch. The downfall of this is that they will not withstand heavy duty use over and over again.
Fiberglass rods are the most commonly used because they are available in large variety of rigid and flexible styles.