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Chasing Out the Fireplace Smell

Chasing Out the Fireplace Smell

Fireplace smell can be an easily fixable problem in the home. Recently, I was at a dinner party with some friends, and upon entering their beautiful home, came an unpleasant smell. It was musty and smelled like a campfire. I remember it being a humid evening in Illinois, (certainly not uncommon), and unfortunately my friends did not have the air conditioning on. I thought something was burning, or maybe coming from the outside. They mentioned to me that they couldn’t get the smell out of their home, even after spraying Febreeze and turning on the air purifier. It did get rid of the scented air rather quickly. I finally remembered…This smell is likely the result of a dirty or malfunctioning fireplace.

What’s that Fireplace Smell?

Your fireplace can smell just after using it. It can also smell during the summer at peaks of humidity or after rain. The smell can be a result of:

  • Soot or creosote buildup: A chemical or charcoal-like smell. Creosote is the result of combustion build up and is flammable. The flue should be swept as soon as possible.
  • Moist air entering or water damage in the flue: Your house smells musty like it has been sitting in high humidity for too long without any cleaning. 
  • Animal debris: A natural smell that comes from animals, such as feces. Think of it like the smell of a zoo, but less intense. The debris from nests can create chimney fires, keep an eye out for this.
  • Airflow problems: If your house smells like a smoky campfire, this is the result of an airflow problem. The negative pressure sucks the air from outside in your house, sucking the smoke/smell from the flue inside.

Can I Prevent Fireplace Smell?

If you don’t have your chimney swept every year, a fireplace smell is a great indicator that you need to start. Having your chimney swept annually by a certified chimney professional can identify and remove any problems before they get worse. There are many other problems that can occur besides a smelly fireplace. As mentioned above, buildup of creosote or animal debris can cause chimney fires. That’s something you want to avoid altogether, so hiring a chimney professional is a good investment if you want to keep your home healthy/safe.

What Can I Do to Fix It?

When your chimney stinks, the goal is to get rid of the smell right away! People sometimes resort to a deep clean of the chimney box, some aerosol spray or an air purifier. Unfortunately, fireplace smell is caused by an underlying issue within the chimney and needs more fixing. The nasty smell will keep coming back until the problem is fixed.

Calling a chimney professional is your first step to a n odor-free chimney. A chimney professional will first inspect the chimney, determine the cause of the smell and then sweep it. It’s really not possible to do it yourself, and the help of a professional will make the process go by faster. Superior Chimney is here to help. We are the top rated and experienced chimney repair company in Chicagoland. Call Superior Chimney today for a preliminary inspection at 877-224-6349.

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