You’re likely enjoying your summer right now. After a hard day’s work, you’ve settled down to relax on the couch with your favorite show or movie, but before the opening credits are done you’re attacked with an odor that doesn’t belong. Something is amiss, and after a while, you find that the odor is coming from your fireplace. You’ve determined where it’s from, but now you have to find the cause. There are a few types of odors that could come from your chimney, and each of them means something different. Learn about each odor and what causes them below.

Smoke/Grill Odor

If the odor you smell is like that of a dirty oven or barbecue grill, then the problem is a dirty fireplace! Your chimney and fireplace haven’t been cleaned, and the soot and creosote coating the inside of the flue is causing odors that may end up permeating your whole house. The reason why you don’t immediately notice this type of odor is because it can come and go with barometric pressure, storm systems, wind gusts, and humidity. If you smell a smoky or barbecue odor at all, the only way to stop it is to clean it away. Schedule a chimney sweep with a professional so that all the creosote and soot from a winter’s worth of fires can be removed.

Moldy/Mildewy Odor

If the odor coming from your fireplace is like a pile of dirty or damp laundry, there is water present in the system. Not only does it mean water is in the system, but it means water has been present long enough to allow bacteria and mold spores to grow. By the time you notice the odor, there is likely serious water damage already. A chimney leak can lead to damage to the entire chimney system and other parts of your house including ceilings, floors, walls, and furniture. If you smell this type of odor or identify signs of a chimney leak, it’s important to call a professional today.

Foul/Decomposition Odor

If you smell the foul odor of death or decomposition in your fireplace, there may be a couple of causes. First, there may be an animal in your chimney system that has gotten stuck and suffocated. Another cause for this smell is the decomposition of other organic materials including sticks, leaves, animal fur, droppings, and unburned logs in the hearth. Like creosote and soot, these materials can be removed through a simple chimney sweeping. When you schedule a chimney sweeping with a certified expert, you can count on all the debris and byproducts being brushed and cleaned away without damaging the liner or making a mess of your house.

If you haven’t scheduled your chimney sweeping or inspection yet, the time is now to schedule. There is still time to have your important chimney maintenance completed before the fall! Call The Mad Hatter at 317-596-0200 and get on our schedule now!