Chimney Sweep Cost
The average cost of a chimney sweep is between £60 – £120, for either 1 or 2 chimneys, without additional services such as bird nest removal or CCTV inspection. Factors affecting the cost of a chimney sweep are discussed in more detail below.
|Low Cost||£40 – £80|
|National Average Cost||£60 – £120|
|High Cost||£70 – £130|
An Overview of Chimney Sweeping
Chimney sweeping is an important job, just like other house cleaning jobs like gutter cleaning, which often gets neglected and forgotten about by most homeowners. However, just like gutter cleaning, it’s an important task which needs to be done regularly, properly and by appropriately trained professionals, in order to ensure your home and your family are safe.
How Much Does a Chimney Sweep Cost?
So, how much does it cost to sweep a chimney? The cost of a chimney sweep is usually priced by; 1) the number of flues, chimneys or stoves to be swept 2) the interval since the last sweep 3) additional tasks required such as foreign object removal (i.e. birds nest removal). The following table given an overview of chimney sweeping costs which you can expect to pay:
|Chimney Sweeping Cost|
|Low Cost||Average Cost||High Cost|
|Cost Range||£40 – £80||£60 – £120||£70 – £130|
|Chimney / Flue Number||Single Chimney||One or Two Chimneys||One or Two Chimneys|
|Time Since Last Sweep||1 year +||1-2 years +||2 years +|
|Bird Nest Removal||No||+£75 – £100 per||+£75 – £100|
|CCTV Inspection||No||+£90 – £100 per chimney||+£90 – £100 per chimney|
Chimney Sweeping Costs
The average home will usually have one chimney to sweep, which is most house-holds has usually been swept more than 1 year ago, since people aren’t good at regularly ensuring their chimneys are swept. Therefore, the U.K. average for the cost of a chimney sweep is between £60 – £80, with several factors likely to affect the cost which you will need to consider when estimating a price for your job, these are discussed in more detail below.
Cost Factors Affecting the Price of a Chimney Sweep
- Time Since Last Sweep – Most homes will go for more than 2 years without having their chimneys swept, even though the recommended sweeping frequency for homes with a log burning stove is at least once per year, and ideally every 3-4 months where possible. If you’ve not had the chimney swept for more than a year then the price is between £40 and £55, however this rises by about £20 per sweep for those who have gone longer than 2 years without a chimney sweep
- Number of Chimneys – Average homes will have one chimney and will therefore pay a standard price for a chimney sweep. However, for those homes with more than one chimney, you can expect to pay around 1.5 – 2 times the price of a standard sweep. Clearly, this is because it’s almost twice the work involved
- Stove and Chimney Clean – Cleaning of the stove as well as having the chimney swept isn’t always necessary, particularly if you have a fixed stove in place. However, if you have a real wood or real coal fire then you may wish to pay for your stove to be swept also. The cost of chimney sweeping and stove cleaning are usually about an extra £10-15 per stove
- Your Location – Where you live will always be a factor affecting the cost of any job in the home, chimney sweeping is not excluded from this. For those living in the south and London area, you can expect to pay around 20% more for a chimney sweep, compared to those living in the Midlands
- Time of Year – It’s not unusual to expect the cost of chimney sweeping to be higher; 1) in the winter when you need to use the fire 2) just before the winter when people are preparing for the winter and the chimney sweeps are at their busiest. We therefore recommend you plan well in advance to avoid additional costs. Usually additional costs can be as much as £50 addition per job in the busy season.
Price of Chimney Sweeping Supplies
The cost of chimney sweeping supplies is usually only of interest if you’re looking to do the job yourself. There are quite a few supplies recommended by the National Association of Chimney Sweepers, these include:
- Chimney sweep brushes (Basic) – £20-£40 – A set of basic, and quite flimsy brushes, can be purchased of websites such as eBay or Amazon for around £20 – £40
- Chimney sweep brushes (Pro Kit) – £180 – £270 – A set of pro chimney sweeping rods can be purchased from a company like Rod Station for anything up to £270
- A dust shovel – £5 – Allows you to remove any dust, old coal and wood from the existing stove. A shovel would be a suitable alternative likely to be in the shed or the garage already
- A hand brush £3 – Used in conjunction with the dust shovel to sweep out the dust, ashes and debris from the hearth
- Telescopic mirror – £7 – A mirror will allow you to see up the chimney and obtain views of what you’re cleaning
- Smoke pellets – £22 – £25 – Can be used to assess the patency of the chimney before and after a sweep
- Dust sheets – £15 – £50 – For a small dust sheet expect to pay less. However, keep in mind how much mess chimney sweeping makes and how many sheets you’re likely to need to protect your furniture and soft furnishings.
Chimney Sweeping Service Costs Compared
|Chimney Sweeping Costs By Time Scale & Chimney Number|
|Number of Chimneys||Chimney Last Swept||Average Cost Range|
|One flue or stove swept||1 year +||£40 – £65|
|One flue or stove swept||2 years +||£60 – £80|
|2 Chimneys swept (same house)||1 year +||£70 – £120|
|2 Chimneys swept (same house)||2 years +||£80 – £130|
Additional Chimney Sweeping Costs
In addition to a standard chimney clean, most chimney sweepers will offer additional services at an additional cost, it’s important to ask about these when pricing up a job. Additional services usually include:
- Removal of birds nest from chimney – £75 – £100 – This is the price for the removal of a small nest, but prices can increase depending on the size of the nest
- Chimney inspection using CCTV – £90 – £100 – The chimney sweep will use specialist equipment to assess and survey inside the chimney for any damage or decay
- Luck chimney sweep hire – £60 – £180 – It can be considered lucky to hire a real chimney sweep to appear at your wedding. Costs are for 1 – 1.5 hours and will usually be affected by the county / location in the U.K. you live.
|Additional Chimney Sweep Costs by Service|
|Chimney Sweeping Service||Average Cost|
|Birds nest removal||£75 – £100|
|Chimney CCTV inspection||£90 – £100|
|Lucky Chimney Sweep Hire (Wedding)||£60 – £180|
Why Do You Need to Get Your Chimney Swept?
Despite the fact it sounds like an outdated chore, chimney sweeping remains an important task in your home and there are several reasons why.
Keeping your home safe. The risk of a spontaneous fire breaking out within the chimney flue increase where there is a greater amount of debris sitting there. A fire products smoke, soot and debris which travels upwards into the flue and sits against the flu liner. At some point in the future it’s then possible for all of this debris to ignite and cause a fire within the chimney itself. Keeping the chimney swept can significantly reduce the risk of this occurring.
Improving the heat efficiency of the fire. Open fires require oxygen from the chimney in order to burn effectively. The better the air supply to the fire then the better and more efficiently it will burn. Therefore by reducing the debris within the chimney you ultimately increase the air supply to the fire by allowing a more free flow of air down to the flames.
Improve and increase the longevity of the chimney. Keeping the chimney clean through regular cleaning removes the unwanted build up of by-products which can coat the flue liner. By removing these by-products you will ultimately reduce the wear and tear to the flue, the chimney shelf and surrounding masonry.
Ultimately, chimneys require the free passage of air, removal of built up debris not only provides the added benefits discussed above but it generally removes any blockages, and allows your chimney to work more efficiently. Overall, the cost of a chimney sweep is worth paying for when you compare it against the added benefits it provides for your beloved home.
How Often Do You Need a Chimney Swept?
Chimney sweeping is a task which should be completed regularly as part of your general home maintenance. We recommend that the frequency be dictated by the type of fire you have and the fuel it uses, we recommend that:
- Gas fires – Clean once per year
- Oil fires – Clean once per year
- Wood fires – Clean 3-4 months when in use
License Details & Costs
For safety, we recommend that you consider chimney sweeps who are registered with the National Association of Chimney Sweeps (NACS). A registration is usually stated on their website but to see if someone is truly registered you can visit the search page here. Fully accredited NACS members will be able to provide you with a certificate upon competition of the job. There isn’t usually a separate charge for this, but expect to pay around 20-40% more with a chimney sweep who is registered, compared to one who is not.
Benefits of using a registered chimney sweep include:
- You can be sure the NACS registered chimney sweep has had appropriate training and certification
- They are fully insured to work on your property should anything go wrong
- They follow an industry standard code of practice for chimney sweeping
- They are fully qualified to complete thorough CCTV inspections of chimneys, and able to identify any issues.
Time Schedules Involved in Chimney Sweeping
The following are typical time schedules required for most chimney sweeping jobs:
- Site preparation, including dust sheets – 10 minutes
- Brush assembly – 5 minutes
- Full chimney clean – 30 – 60 minutes
- Tidying, cleaning – 10 minutes
Additional services will vary depending on the complexity of the job and the equipment used:
- Birds nest removal – 15 minutes per nest
- CCTV inspection – 15-30 minutes
Chimney Sweep FAQs
Here are common questions about chimney sweeping in your home.
Q. How often does my chimney need to be cleaned?
A. A chimney sweeping professional can easily make an estimation for cleaning required from your individual burning practices.
Q. How long does it take to sweep a chimney?
A. Every flue in every home is different, but an average for cleaning thoroughly should take about 45 – 60 minutes. This time can increase substantially if the flue shows signs of damage, blockages (e.g Birds nests) or if creosote present.