How do I smoke test a chimney?

Prior to the installation of wood burning stoves, multi fuel stoves into an existing chimney it is advisable to smoke test the existing chimney, epecially if the chimney has not been used for some time, even if usage was ceased directly after the chimney having been swept.

Stage one in this smoke test process is to ensure that all appliances currently used in the chimney are not alight.

Where a gas liner has been installed into the chimney run where the wood burning stoves being installed it is best for that liner to be removed. Our stoves installation teams can remove the gas liner and smoke test the chimney if required.

In order to smoke test a chimney access must be available into the roof space and other areas of the house through which the chimney flue runs.

Where a chimney stack is shared with neighbouring houses it is best to ensure no appliances are used in the chimney stack during the smoke test. If there is a chimney breach i.e. leakage of smoke through a mid feather or wall between the flues it may not be possible to detect this leak if another appliance is in use. It is best to ask neighbours sharing the stack if it is possible to inspect in their home in the areas where the chimney on their side is located.

Warm the chimney flue by burning some paper in the bottom of it.

Have to hand the material to seal the chimney off at the top and bottom, i.e. a plastic back and some tape or some cardboard and some tape. The bag is useful for capping off the chimney pot at the top.

Light a smoke pellet or smoke cartridge in the bottom of the chimney flue.

As soon as smoke emerges from the chimney pot seal off the top of the flue system, leaving the smoke pellet to burn out and filling the flue with smoke, then seal of the chimney at the bottom.

Observe all parts of the chimney run in your home for smoke leakage. Observe the chimney run of your attached neighbours, if possible, for smoke leakage. You are looking for smoke coming from the top or the bottom of any other flue in the same stack.

A smoke test takes around ten minutes. A professional stoves installation team or professional chimney sweep team will consist of two for the smoke test. If you are smoke testing your own flue it is good to have friend to assist with the observations.

If you would like more details or assistance with the installation of a Country Kiln Wood Burning Stoves please email your query to sales@woodburningstoveslimited.com (The Country Kiln team respond to all emails within 24 hours) or call 01560 483966 Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm GMT or Saturday 10am to 1pm