Chimney Evaluations and Inspections

Chimney Inspection and Evaluation Facts

Did You Know that storks nesting in chimneys were once believed to bring good luck, according to European folklore? The fact is nests in chimneys or blockages of any kind are nothing short of bad news. These obstructions can cause drafting issues, chimney fires and carbon monoxide poisoning.

In 2015, there were 21,306 residential fires in the United States originating in chimneys, fireplaces or other types of solid fuel appliances. According to the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission, these fires resulted in 260 personal injuries, 80 deaths and $163.2 million in property damage.


Fires are Preventable

Virtually all of these fires were preventable according to the (CSIA) Chimney Safety Institute of Americaa non-profit institution dedicated to public and chimney professional education. Both the CSIA and the (NFPA) National Fire Protection Association recommend a yearly fireplace inspection to help prevent these hazards.

Many American homeowners think their chimneys only need to be swept and inspected if they burn wood in their fireplaces or wood stoves. But almost all heating appliances  whether they burn gas, oil, wood or coal, rely on a chimney to carry the toxic gases produced by a heating system to the outside atmosphere!

Carbon Monoxide Poisoning is preventable

A carbon monoxide detector can warn homeowners of potential poisoning after the deadly gas has already entered the living area. However, an annual chimney check can help prevent carbon monoxide from entering the home in the first place.

Put Your Fireplace and Chimney on the “Honey Do” List!

It’s amazing how every fall homeowners shift into home-improvement mode. They clean gutters, garages and basements getting everything prepared for the winter and the upcoming holiday season. The one thing they forget and don’t usually inspect, repair or clean is their fireplace, including the chimney, which makes little sense considering the potential for damage to both property and lives!

An annual chimney inspection by a CSIA Certified Chimney Sweep® is a modest investment that can reduce the danger of chimney fires or carbon monoxide poisoning in your home. CSIA Certified Chimney Sweeps have earned the industry’s highest and most respected credential by passing an intensive examination based on fire codes, clearances and standards for the construction and maintenance of chimneys and venting systems.

In fact, when chimney fires occur, many insurance investigators rely on a CSIA Certified Chimney Sweep to determine whether a fire originated in or did damage to the chimney or venting system. The CSIA, established in 1983, is a non-profit institution, dedicated to educating the public about the prevention of chimney safety hazards. When looking for a chimney inspector what you should look for is a CSIA Certified Chimney Sweep.

Seaside Sweep, Inc. is Wilmington’s only CSIA Certified chimney Sweep company.


There are 3 levels of Chimney Inspection

As per the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 211 Standards

1) Level 1 Inspection 

  • Recommended if you have not changed – and do not plan to change your heating appliance or system.

  • Considered appropriate during annual service visit and during flue cap installation.

  • Technicians do not need to use tools to open or remove doors, panels, or coverings, in order to examine the chimney exterior and interior.

  • Technicians may need commonly available tools to examine portions of the appliance and the chimney connection and the evaluation will not disrupt the chimney structure or finish. 



Our video scanning and recording equipment used to conduct our inspections is manufactured by Estoban Corp:

Chim-Scan Closed Circuit Internal Evaluation System

2) Level 2 Inspection

  • Required when any change is made to your system – for example, before the flue is relined, or when you replace an appliance with another of a dissimilar type or efficiency level.

  • Required upon the sale or transfer of property.

  • Suggested when an operating malfunction or external event is likely to have caused damage to the chimney or appliance.

  • Does not require the removal or destruction of permanently attached portions of the chimney or building structure.

  • Includes all services appropriate in a Level I inspection, plus the examination of accessible portions of the chimney exterior and interior, including attics crawlspaces and basements.

  • Can include a visual inspection or a video scan.

3) Level 3 Inspection – quote only – read below

  • Conducted only after a Level 1 or Level 2 inspection indicates a hazard in concealed portions of the chimney and flue.

  • Involves the removal, and possibly demolition and destruction, of portions of the chimney or building structure, as necessary.

  • Requires special tools and access to concealed areas of the chimney and flue.

    “Your Ash Is Mine!”

    Yes, our tagline is hilarious, but we are very serious about what we do!

    Seaside Sweep, Inc. is Wilmington’s only CSIA (Chimney Safety Institute of America) Certified Chimney Sweep Company!

    Since 1980

    Member of the (NCSG) National Chimney Sweep Guild

    Call or E-mail Seaside Sweep, Inc. today!  910-805-7481

    For all your Fireplace or Chimney related problems