Total Chimney Care's Blog

We clean and reline oil flues, too

Most homeowners know about the need for wood-burning, gas and pellet-burning fireplace to be inspected and cleaned. But if you have an oil furnace, did you know your chimney furnace also requires regular maintenance? The flue to your oil furnace should also be annually swept and inspected, and will eventually need to be relined.

modern steel chimney on house roof



Scheduling your oil furnace flue cleaning and inspection


Just like any combustion appliance, your oil furnace generates soot and gases each time you burn it. In the winter, oil furnaces work overtime, running long cycles to keep your home warm. During these long cycles, the oil flue accumulates soot and debris. Chunks of soot will begin to fall to the base of the chimney, accumulating on the top of your chimney furnace. That debris can interfere with the venting of your oil furnace. At an extreme, it can block carbon monoxide from safely exiting your home, putting those inside in danger. Additionally, the soot that accumulates within your chimney is highly corrosive; It can cause a breakdown of your oil chimney flue when it’s allowed to sit on the walls for a while.

To keep your oil furnace’s chimney clean and safe from soot, the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) recommends having your oil furnace flue swept and inspected by a CSIA-certified chimney sweep at least once per year. The CSIA recommends having your oil furnace flue cleaned in the spring to remove damaging soot as soon as possible. When you schedule service for your oil furnace, beware that many furnace technicians will remove debris from a brick firebox, but they will not fully clean and inspect the chimney.


Having your oil furnace flue relined


Eventually, you may find that your oil flue needs to be relined. The liner will eventually break down after years of abuse from your furnace exhaust. Or, if you have your oil furnace replaced, you may have to have your furnace flue relined to accommodate your new unit. Many older, less efficient oil furnaces required larger chimney flues. Newer, more energy efficient models require much smaller flues. In that case, your oil furnace flue will have to be relined to optimize the efficiency of your new furnace and prevent problems with draft or other operation.

If your home is warmed with an oil furnace, this is the time to schedule your oil furnace chimney’s annual chimney sweeping and inspection. Total Chimney Care can help! Our CSIA-certified chimney sweeps can clean and inspect your oil furnace flue to ensure safety and efficiency. If your oil furnace flue needs to be relined, call Total Chimney Care! We can fit your oil furnace flue with a new liner to optimize its function.

By Steve Sobczak on April 15th, 2019 | Tagged with: Tags: , , , | Leave a Comment

Service Your Oil Flue Annually

All heating appliances need regular maintenance, whether it’s an open-hearth chimney, a heating stove or a furnace. If you have an oil furnace, your annual service is especially important! Here’s why you should service your oil flue annually and what to expect from your annual oil flue service.

Why oil flues require maintenance.

Like any combustion appliance, your oil furnace generates smoke, soot, and gas. As your oil furnace burns, all of those combustion byproducts travel up your oil flue and out of your home. In the process, however, soot is deposited on the walls of your chimney flue. If left unchecked, that soot can cause several problems. First and foremost, the soot is highly corrosive; it can eat away at the walls of your oil flue, causing holes and leaks that prevent the flue from safely venting dangerous smoke and gases from the furnace. The buildup in your oil flue may also run back through the system. It can land on the furnace itself and buildup, blocking the working components of the furnace.

In addition to causing your oil furnace to malfunction due to a buildup of debris, failing to clean your oil furnace can cause carbon monoxide to build up dangerously in your home. If your flue is clogged, the carbon monoxide generated by your furnace’s combustion will back up into your home. Also, if there are gaps or holes in the furnace flue, carbon monoxide can seep out of the cracks and holes and into your home. Either way, a dirty oil flue can lead to a dangerous, or even deadly, buildup of carbon monoxide in your home.

What to expect during an oil flue service.

So what exactly will your technician do during an oil flue cleaning? First, any openings that allow soot to enter your home will be sealed. Then, your technician will disconnect the pipe that attaches your furnace to the chimney. That pipe will be cleaned, and the chimney will be evaluated to see whether it needs to be swept. If the chimney has too much of a buildup, your technician will use high-powered brushes to sweep soot and debris from your flue. Any debris swept from the flue or from the connector pipe will be vacuumed away.

After the sweeping, your technician will perform another crucial task: the annual inspection. Your chimney technician will inspect your oil flue and all of the connecting components to look for any signs of damage or weakness that could pose a danger to your home or your family. If any problems are found, your technicians will make recommendations to have your flue repaired to restore its safety.

Who to call for oil flue cleaning.

Are you wondering who can service your oil furnace flue? In New Haven and Fairfield, you can call Total Chimney Care! We provide full-scale oil flue cleaning and inspections to keep your furnace running efficiently and safely. Call to schedule your appointment today!

By Steve Sobczak on January 12th, 2018 | Tagged with: Tags: , , | Leave a Comment