WHO AM I?
WHAT DO I DO?
I am Nick Kennedy, an experienced independent chimney sweep servicing the South East.
I trained at the Institute of Chimney Sweeps (ICS) but soon learnt there was much more to the job than just sweeping. Over the years I've built a large client base and by honing my techniques, investing in equipment, designing CCTV cameras and listening to customers, I've become much more than just a sweep.
This website shows some images of the day to day work I deal with, I only take photographs of the problem flues, many are just fine they just don't make it onto these pages.
ICS is now the U.K.'s largest chimney sweeping organisation. All of our members receive ongoing training to the highest standard in all aspects of flues and appliances. Many offer repair work as well as regular sweeping.
As a sweep you get called to clean, inspect and generally check the safety of many flues and appliances.
These can range from Stoves to Inglenooks, Oil Boilers, Solid Fuel Range Cookers (AGA, Raybun or Stanley), Biomass, Pizza Ovens or School Heating Systems you just never know!
I also carry out CCTV Inspections for the general public and stove installers prior to them installing liners for various appliances. This takes away the guess work - it allows me to look for holes in flues and judge the internal diameter before fitting flexible liners.
I get called into inspect problem flues - damaged liners from chimney fires or poor installations to stoves with little or no draw. The CCTV helps identify problems but the knowledge gained from experience is the main advantage.
Stove maintenance is a big part of my daily work, I stock a large selection of stove glass, heat paint, door rope and vermiculite stove bricks for various stoves. Keeping stoves burning safely is important for the welfare of your house and your family.
Always have your flue swept at least once a year.
Copper heating pipe found in a capped flue. This one was to be re-opened and lined by a local shop, they then had a chance to call the plumbers before dropping a liner.
Wood screws used to fix a liner.
After years of abuse by a heavy handed sweep with the wrong kind of equipment this liner failed.
Stainless threaded bar found stuck in the side of a moden flue.
The hood on this inglenook hadn’t been swept in years, it caught alight stripping all the paint off the top section.
The classic birds nests that casue serious blockage.
Large soot deposits that have built up over time.
Thick build up of tar like lumps that need to cleared.
Click on the images above to reveal the detailed and at times tricky work involved in cleaning what might appear at first glance to be a fairly innocuous flues!
Do not slumber your appliance overnight.
Sweeping a flue is the best way to remove soot. Soot is an amorphous carbon deposit produced by the incomplete burning of a solid fuel and can quickly clog your flue. This needs to be done every three months during the burning season, for most fires in our climbs once a year is adequate. If in any doubt about your chimney ask a sweep. A sweep can tell you if you have a blockage, restricting the exhausting gases can cause Carbon Monoxide to spill into your house - it can kill you!
Carbon monoxide (CO) is the most common type of fatal air poisoning in many countries. Carbon monoxide is colorless, odorless, and tasteless, but highly toxic. (wikipedia.org)
Nests come in all shapes and sizes, most in the South East are from Jackdaws. These are tenacious characters that build nests all year round and the only way to move them on is to fit a bird guard cowl. If you remove a nest they can be back within a couple of hours happily throwing twigs, wool, fur, string, straw, tools, socks etc... back down your flue. They then plug the top with soil, this is not only a fire hazard it also stops the free flow of gasses and can cause carbon monoxide poisoning.
Stove maintenance is a big part of my daily work. A good sweep is always looking for defects in your stove, holes that can allow harmful gases escape. A stove with poor fitting door rope can over fire: the rope seal creates an air tight seal allowing you to control the rate at which the fuel is burnt with the air controls. I stock a large selection of stove glass, heat paint, door rope and vermiculite stove bricks for various stoves. If it is not in stock I can usually get it within a couple of days. Keeping stoves burning safely is important for the welfare of your house and your family.
Do you know what's up your chimney? It's not a place that many if any people consider looking up, however chimney maintenance is essential especially if you've just moved into your property and was well worth getting inspected.
I carry out CCTV Inspections for the general public and stove installers prior to them installing liners for various appliances. This takes away the guess work - it allows me to look for holes in flues and judge the internal diameter before fitting flexible liners.
If soot falls back into the house through the chimney, the floors can get dirty and messy. This happens when the byproduct accumulates in the chimney, and due to the back-suction of air, it gets pulled back towards the inside of the house. Soot can stain carpets and floors and cleaning it up can get extremely messy.
I am always happy to give advice, many issues with stoves and open fires are easily rectified with a little knowledge. Problems can include: Poor performing flues, Stoves that burn too hot, Downdraft issues, Syphoning, Soot falls and Smelly stoves. I can even give you tips as to how to light a fire. Just call - if I can help I will.
If creosote accumulates in the chimney in a substantial quantity, it may be the cause of chimney fires. This is one reason why chimneys should be regularly inspected and cleaned.