Choosing a service company is no small matter. It starts with researching a chimney sweep near you. You want someone skilled, reliable, and trustworthy, but there’s more to consider. Because your family’s safety is at stake (from flue fires and carbon monoxide), choosing the best chimney technician you can find is worth the effort.
Now, let’s talk about how to hire the best chimney professional to perform your annual maintenance. When trying to hire someone to clean your fireplace chimney, you may run into some issues, not knowing where to start. The details can often be overwhelming.
To help consumers make the process easier, we’ve put together a list of 5 things to consider before hiring a company or individual to clean your fireplace and chimney flue:
- CSIA Certifications
- Proper Training
- Liability Insurance
- Local Area Expertise
- Company Reputation
1. CSIA Certified Qualifications
Is the service person a CSIA Certified Chimney Sweep by the Chimney Safety Institute of America?
Unfortunately, not all chimney companies undergo the riggers to ensure they only send out qualified people. The Certified Chimney professionals who dedicate themselves to proper care and cleaning of chimneys are a homeowner’s minimal qualification for reliable chimney care.
A CSIA Certified Chimney Technician studies intensely and undergoes the official testing (through the Chimney Safety Institute of America) to earn the title and gain professional basics necessary to perform a chimney and fireplace cleaning with an inspection.
Make sure to inquire if a CSIA Certified Tech will be present at the job site during your service.
2. Proper Training
Is your technician adequately trained?
CSIA training is the industry standard, and it should be non-negotiable when choosing who you trust with your fireplace and chimney maintenance plan. However, it goes beyond getting certified and extends into ongoing education.
Your chimney service should only send out a maintenance person with sufficient experience and is trained under a Master Chimney Sweep. The reason is that understanding the various types of fireplaces and venting systems is no small matter. The job requires a skilled professional who is continually working on acquiring new knowledge as the industry evolves.
Master Technicians have worked in the trade at least ten years as a certified professional and have a track record of additional training and peer review supervision. You should ask if the chimney technician coming to your home is qualified for the service you need.
3. Liability Insurance
Does the company have insurance? A company that does is more than happy to prove it!
Working on fireplaces and chimneys is dangerous and dirty work. You’ll need extra diligence to ensure that the workers are safe and the home protected from any unintended mess or mishap. By both properly training the crew members and having liability insurance, a chimney cleaning service is going above the average to provide protection for employees and customers alike. Be sure the chimney company has several technicians who have credentials and are covered by liability insurance.
4. Experience with Chimneys in Your Area
Does the technician have enough experience and training with the types of chimneys that are common where you live? Look for established service companies that have experience working on homes in your local area.
When you find the right specialist, ask them a few more questions. Perhaps the company was established long ago, but how long have they serviced your area? It may seem an odd question to ask, but chimneys are unique, and so are their problems. Different regions may be more prone to different types of issues.
If a company is new to your area, it’s technicians may not yet be familiar with troubleshooting chimney problems locally. The differences could be due to construction style or even seasonal conditions! A Certified Sweep who works under a technician who holds a Master Certification is uniquely qualified to provide both new insight and the knowledge that only comes from years of working experience.
5. Customer Reviews of the Company
What experience have other homeowners had with this company?
Finally, you must consider the review sources that track how successfully a company provides satisfactory customer service. By checking with the Better Business Bureau, Yelp, and Google, you can get an idea of how seriously a company takes a good reputation by providing quality work.
Another great source to find a qualified company is your neighbors and friends. Since they have the same chimney care needs, you should ask about their experiences with the chimney company you’re considering.
Fireplaces, gas flues, and wood stoves need routine maintenance and inspection to maintain their proper operation. Having your fireplace and chimney serviced every year is a necessity regardless if you enjoy a wood-burning stove or a gas fireplace. Annual chimney inspection and cleaning is the only way to make sure your chimney was installed correctly and is operating safely and efficiently.
Visit our Testimonials page to Read our Reviews
Looking for a Local KC Chimney Service?
At Full Service Chimney, we will make your chimney maintenance easy. Do as thousands of others have done, and call 913-642-6171 to hire the Best Chimney Sweep in Kansas City!