Why Every Sweeping Comes with an Inspection

The National Fire Protection Association
(NFPA) recommends that all chimneys and/or appliances, and that includes oil and gas furnaces, have an annual inspection and sweeping. But not all inspections and sweepings are created equal.

In order to meet the needs of consumers as well as codes and standards, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) has developed the 3 Levels of Inspection Procedures which are followed by most certified sweeps. The circumstances which give rise to the inspection determine what level of inspection is to be conducted.

The Clean Sweep Difference

However, with that said, here at Clean Sweep of Anne Arundel County we use an internal digital camera system evaluation with all of our sweeping and inspections when applicable. In our experience, we believe getting an up-close look at the inner workings of the system enables us to better evaluate the system as a whole. Using a camera system which is lowered or entered into the flue from the bottom of the chimney, we’re able to inspect the chimney from a range of just a few inches — as opposed to just trying to figure it out by looking from the top or bottom of the chimney system.

Are Annual Sweepings & Inspections Really Necessary?

Because preventative maintenance is always more cost-effective than making repairs that could have been avoided, it just makes sense to get an annual chimney sweeping and inspection. This routine maintenance is critical for regularly-used chimneys and even for those only used occasionally. You just never know what has crawled into the chimney and built a nest or died (blocking the flue).


Benefits of routine chimney inspections and maintenance:

  • Improve the performance and safety of your heating appliance
  • Protect your home investment
  • Monitor changes over time–like seeing a dentist regularly
prefabricated chimney seperated
cracks in flue
hole in flue

A Brief Description of the 3 Levels of Inspection:

This video put out by The Chimney Safety Institute is one of the best we have seen describing the 3 levels of inspection. We highly recommend you watch it before hiring a sweep and your appointment.

Don’t hesitate to contact us after viewing the videos in regard to fireplace and chimney inspections.  We have put together a comprehensive article that outlines some of the things we look for during an inspection for your leisure.

We’re here to answer any questions you may have!

Click here to request an appointment online!

Buying Or Selling A House?

Then you absolutely need a chimney inspection. In fact, a property transaction requires a level 2 chimney inspection.

But I already got a home inspection. 

Realtor and friend Theresa Kurtz, presents some cases of why you need a home inspection and what are the differences between your typical home inspection and a chimney inspection. Read it here.


Before an inspection, it’s important to get the entire chimney system swept.  Be sure to rely on reputable professionals who can take care of all your chimney service needs.