How To Clean Fireplace: Sitting next to a roaring fireplace in the middle of winter is the best way to feel warm and cozy. But that roaring fire can leave a mess, as soot and ash from the fire coat the inside of the chimney and build up over time.
So it’s not surprising that you don’t know where to start when it’s time to clean the filthy fireplace. We can help, which is good news. Read on to learn how to clean your fireplace, how often you should clean it, and how to keep it clean for longer.
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How often should a fireplace be cleaned?
It probably doesn’t sound like a fun thing to do to clean a fireplace. But it is an important job that needs to be done every year. Cleaning the fireplace is about much more than just making it look nice. It’s also about safety since too much soot, and ash can cause fires.
The National Fire Protection Association says that you should clean your fireplace every year, preferably before or after fireplace season. Keeping your fireplace clean keeps it looking great and makes sure it works well and is safe.
Things You Will Need
- Sheets of plastic
- Cans and bags for trash
- Clothes and gloves for work
- Dish detergent
- Warm water
- Clean rags and towels
- Sweep and dustpan in hand
- Brushes with stiff bristles
- Spray a bottle of vinegar into a bucket
How to Get Your Fireplace Clean
Step 1: Get your space ready
Because of how they work, fireplaces can be very messy to clean. So, before you start scrubbing and scouring, remove any small things that are more likely to get broken by dust and dirt. Move any pieces of furniture close to the fireplace at least 10 feet away.
Cover furniture that can’t be moved with a plastic sheet. Put a few garbage cans with lids near the fireplace to make it easy to throw away the ash, and soot, and clean up. And as for you, make sure you wear clothes and shoes that can get dirty and gloves that can handle getting soot on them.
Step 2: Take grates off and clean them
Now that you’ve set up your room, it’s time to start. Before you can begin cleaning the fireplace’s interior, you must remove the grate and andirons (the metal structure that holds the logs) and clean them outside.
To wash your fireplace grate, brush away any soot or ash that has built up. A handheld vacuum attachment could be helpful here. Then, mix a few drops of dish soap with some water, and use a scrub brush to scrub the mixture on the grate. Last, wash the grate and wipe it dry. Put it somewhere else until the fireplace is cleaned.
Step 3: Sweep the ashes away
Using a small broom and dustpan or a sturdy duster, sweep away the extra ashes gathered at the bottom of the fireplace. You don’t have to sweep everything away, just the excess dirt that will make it hard to clean later.
Step 4: Begin Scrubbing
Start scrubbing at the top of the inside of the fireplace with a dry nylon scrub brush or another brush with stiff bristles. As you work your way down, soot and creosote will fall to the bottom. This step takes a little bit of work, but it’s essential. After cleaning the fireplace inside, sweep or vacuum out the bottom again and throw the dirt away.
Step 5: Make your cleaning solution
Now that the surface dirt has been cleaned off the inside of the fireplace, it’s time to dig a little deeper. You will make a cleaning solution that will be put on the surface of the fireplace to get rid of more profound, older stains. In a large bucket, mix equal parts vinegar, warm water, and a few tablespoons of dish soap.
Step 6. Spray and scrub
Then, spray the cleaning solution on the floor and walls of the fireplace and allow it to sit for a few minutes. Once the solution has wholly soaked the brick, get another dry, stiff-bristled brush and wet it with the cleaning solution. Start scrubbing the fireplace with the brush, again from top to bottom.
Use the spray bottle to wet any spots that are still dry and clean any sites that are still dirty. When scrubbing an area, use some clean towels to get rid of the extra liquid and dirt. Once the entire fireplace has been washed and scoured, wipe the bottom of the fireplace to remove any cleaning solution that has accumulated there.
Step 7: Clean the doors and facing
Now is how to wash the doors on your fireplace if it has them. You might be able to clean them with Windex or another glass cleaner, but if the dirt is stuck, use a mixture of one part water and part white vinegar.
Most likely, the front of your fireplace also needs to be cleaned. your brick fireplace facing is still in good shape, you can use the same cleaning solution. If it looks like it might fall apart, brush and vacuum the dirt away.
If your siding is not brick, use a mixture of hot water and a few pumps of dish soap. Once everything is clean and dry, you can put the grate home in and get ready to use your fireplace. You are worth it after all this tough work.