What causes a chimney fire?

The primary causes of a chimney fire are;
– Improper appliance sizing
– Burning wet wood
– Infrequent sweeping / cleaning
– Overnight wood burning for long periods in wood stoves.

The UK government is phasing out the sale of wet wood as not only is it a fire hazard but it is a threat to our environment. When wet wood is burnt it actually omits more smoke than it does heat and releases harmful toxins. These toxins then cause a build up in the flue, which without regular sweeping, can cause a flue fire when the blockage meets the heat. This is why its imperative to get your chimney cleaned regularly to prevent any flue blockage.

How does a chimney fire start?

Most chimney fires start inside the flue where there’s either creosote buildup or a flue blockage of some kind. As heat from the fire reaches these flammable materials, the creosote or blockage ignites, starting a chimney fire.

What causes a chimney fire?

How do i know if I have a chimney fire?

You will hear loud crackling / popping noise from the chimney flue (similar to a bonfire sound), you will see a lot of dense, thick smoke and there will be a strong and intense smell. As soon as you notice any of these signs you must call 999 immediately.

What do I do if I have a chimney fire?

1. Call the fire services on 999
2. Shut all the air vents and flue dampers to reduce the oxygen supply.
3. Safely block the fire with something noncombustible if you have an open fire, ie bricks or stone, metal.
4. Ensure flammable items are moved away from the fire. Ie, furniture, rugs, paintings.
5. Avoid pouring water on the fire. If safe to do so, use a fire extinguisher.
6. Ensure the fire service can access the roof space
7. If there is a risk of the fire spreading to other parts of the roof, use a hose to wet the near by areas but not the chimney /fire itself.