When your fireplace smells musky you’ll want to know the reason why. When you start your fire, you can expect an enhanced smell due to the initial low temperature not creating the updraft needed. Dirty flues and fireplace boxes can also let the smoke filter into your home. Other causes include:
- Leaves – falling leaves and other debris can stay in the chimney and rot
- Birds and animals – either dead or alive can cause unpleasant smells
- Humidity – can produce a musty aroma from rusting and damp
- Excessive creosote – instigates a nasty asphalt smell
- Negative air pressure – when your house is tightly sealed mild odours go into the property instead of up the chimney
Eliminating Fireplace Odours
Fireplace smells in the summer are common due to the natural by-products of creosote deposited inside the chimney. They have a smoky smell which intensifies with the wind, rain, and humid air. See how to get rid of fireplace smells in the house here…
Have your fireplace professionally cleaned. This will include an inspection for damage. And a check for unwanted deposits in the chimney itself. Installation of a chimney cap will also be recommended.
Clean the fireplace yourself by shovelling out the ashes regularly. Or use an ash vacuum designed specifically of this purpose. Place the cold ash into a non-flammable container and dispose of it safely. To stop inhalation of any particles, wear a throwaway mask.
Spray the interior of the fireplace with a vinegar and water mix. Or put a bucket of cat litter or charcoal in the fireplace which will absorb the smell. You can also buy a fireplace deodoriser.
The downdraft from outdoor high pressure causes the creosote smell. This can be neutralised with fragranced candles placed around the fireplace.
Using seasoned or low-moisture wood is not only a good way to burn cleanly, but can also drastically reduce the build-up of creosote and sooty deposits forming in the chimney.
Fireplace inserts can help to form a seal around the area and limit the amount of smoke coming in. Additional benefits are extra heat circulation throughout the room. And lower energy bills.
Glass doors are available in a range of styles and sizes to match your décor. Its advisable to have them professionally installed. Unlike a screen designed to keep embers from falling onto the floor, the doors can keep the fireplace securely closed throughout the summer.
Draft stoppers, inflatable chimney balloons, and fireplace plugs can be inserted to avoid energy loss. You’ll need to only take this step when the fireplace isn’t in use. And remember to remove the stopper before you light another fire.
Sealing the fireplace opening permanently will certainly eradicate the smell. and you can have the fireplace professionally concreted if you don’t want to use it again. Contact an experienced fireplace installer for advice on fitting a new gas or electric fire in the original fireplace surrounds.
If you don’t have your chimney cleaned regularly, you’ll be putting your health and safety at risk. Chimney fires caused by the build-up of creosote are extremely powerful. Nearby walls will often burst into flames. Carbon monoxide fumes may be drawn into your home. And can cause loss of life.
Proper maintenance includes the inspection and cleaning of the chimney annually. A six-monthly clean is advisable if you’re burning green wood. Furnace flue cleaning will ensure the removal of any sulphur and chlorine deposits. If left they can form a powerful acid that corrodes the flue itself.
Chimney liners made of metal, cement, or tile will form an airtight path up the chimney. And can provide an extra level of protection against chimney fires. Water won’t be able to get into the masonry work and freeze either. A regular check from a professional chimney sweep will keep your fireplace smelling fresh. And you safe.