Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Why should I have my chimney cleaned?

A: When
you burn wood in a fireplace some of the gases escape from the unburned
wood and these unburned gases build up a solid residue inside the
chimney. If this residue gets thick enough and hot enough, it can
ignite, and the resulting “chimney fire” will burn very fast and hot.
This chimney fire can become hot enough to destroy the inside of the
chimney and even set the house or roof on fire.

Q: How often should my chimney be cleaned?

A: It is recommended that chimneys be inspected once a year by a professional chimney sweep and cleaned if needed. The National Fire Protection Association
(NFPA) also recommends a thorough inspection of all chimneys and
fireplaces after an earthquake to ensure there is no damage to your
chimney that could cause a fire. Some “rules of thumb” that can help
gauge how dirty your chimney is:

1If you burn every day in the winter, sweep every year; if you burn every other day in the winter, sweep every other year.

2Sweep after every two cords of oak firewood and after every cord for a wood-burning stove or insert.

3Sweep after every 50 fires.

at your fireplace and determine how dirty it is. Shine a flashlight
into the firebox and look upwards. If you see build up of 1/8″ or more,
it is ready to be cleaned.

Q: Why should I clean my clothes dryer duct?

Overtime, lint from your clothes slips through the filter in your
clothes dryer and gets into the pipe that leads out of the house. This
lint builds up on the walls of the pipe until it blocks the air from
getting through.

When this duct gets blocked the air can no longer
circulate freely among the clothes you are trying to dry. This causes
the drying cycle to take much longer than it should, sometimes one and a
half hours or more, rather than 30 to 40 minutes. Needless to say, this
is a waste of time and energy.

In addition, the dryer can
overheat and become damaged and it can even cause a fire inside your
dryer. We have had customers who had house fires due to clogged dryer

The solution is to have you dryer ducts cleaned. We use a
long spinning tool that is capable of traveling through your duct for
over 30 feet or more. This dislodges the lint and pulls it out. It is
not uncommon to get whole bags full of lint from one duct!

After that, we blow your duct out with moving air to get any remaining lint from your duct.

sometimes find that the dryer duct is getting clogged due to incorrect
installation in the first place which causes kinks in the hose.

Q: What is Fire On IceTM

A: It is a competitive alternative to gas logs. Fire On IceTM is:

• Easy to assemble and install • Environmentally safe • No popping cinders

• No soot or dirt • No pollution • Mesmerizing • Burns clean • Safe

• Affordable • No mess ever • Lasts a lifetime • Instant ambiance •

• Interchangeable colors • Specially formulated glass

We are an approved retailer and installer for the Fire On IceTM system
and can provide very competitive pricing. We will also make sure that
your chimney is thoroughly cleaned and inspected prior to the

Visit the Fire On IceTM photo gallery for before and after photos. Fire On IceTM comes in over 50 colors and two sizes. We will be glad to bring over samples for you to review. We are a genuine Fire On IceTM and only use their glass product so you get the highest quality product available.

Q: What is a safety inspection?

When we clean your chimney and fireplace, we also look for anything
that could represent possible dangers to you and your family.

the LA, Orange County, Riverside and San Bernardino area we still find
many chimneys that have been damaged by past earthquakes. We check for
structural integrity of your chimney for cracks, loose martar or bricks
or flashing that might leak water.

We also check your chimney
system from top to bottom for cracked flue tiles, areas that show damage
from water penetration or general wear and tear, correct damper
function, or any other points that might make your chimney unsafe to

Our sweeps are also trained to do repairs and make
recommendations on how you can get more use and satisfaction from your
fireplace. Be sure to ask any questions you have while the sweep is
there; we are only too happy to help you learn as much as possible about
your fireplace.

Q: What problems can my fireplace have?

Some fireplace have problems. Most of these can be resolved. While the
following is not a complete list, it describes some of the more common
problem areas.


are many functions that seem to smoke back into the house no matter
what is done. In our experience, the most common cause is that the
fireplace simply needs to be cleaned. This is especially likely if the
smoking has gotten worse over time.

Several other possibilities of
smoking back are problems with the damper, chimney cap, grate,
firewood, or structural problems with the chimney itself. At Lucky
Sully, we do a full inspection with every cleaning, or we can just do
the inspection if the chimney does not need to be cleaned. This
inspection is designed to reveal any causes for excessive smoke.

2Broken chimneys

are a major cause of broken chimneys. Usually, these chimneys are
broken at or near the roof line, although sometimes they can be broken
further down, we may be able to fix crack. In some cases, the fireplace
may need to be rebuilt. We provide these services as we

3Missing mortar or damaged bricks

time, many chimneys develop places that are missing mortar between the
bricks, or damaged bricks, either inside the firebox or on the outside
of the chimney. These areas can usually be repaired, either by replacing
the missing mortar or replacing the bricks themselves. Missing mortar
and damaged bricks can cause fires since they allow flames and sparks.

Q: What is a chimney cap?

A chimney cap is a black, stainless steel or copper manufactured box
that sits on the top of your chimney. It has four major purposes.

prevents sparks and burning debris from getting out of your chimney
onto the roof or surrounding areas. Chimney caps are sometimes called
“spark arrestors”.

It keeps rain from entering your chimney. Water
is very destructive to the inside of your chimney. It mixes the
creosote (residue from burning wood), and eats away at the mortar inside
your flue and firebox. Also, rain causes the metal parts inside your
fireplace, such as the damper, to rust. The chimney cap acts like an
umbrella on top of your chimney to keep out the rain.

It keeps out birds, squirrels, bees, and other animals.

It keeps out leaves and branches.

Sully sells and installs caps from several manufacturers. The caps come
in black painted steel, stainless steel and copper. Many cities have
ordinances which require a cap to be installed.