The UK Fire Services attend around 7,000 chimney fires every year. Chimney fires can quickly envelope your home endangering lives and cause serious damage.
All chimneys need to be swept at least once a year, although if the chimney is used often, twice a year is recommended. Solid fuel burning appliances should be swept at least once a year, ideally before each winter to remove built up soot and creosote as well as other debris that can block or reduce the air flow.
Any chimney blockage or reduced air flow can change the combustion balance of your chimney and appliance increasing the risk of fire or allow dangerous carbon monoxide to enter the home.
Even low levels of Carbon Monoxide poisoning can lead to permanent ill-health or death. The gas has no colour, taste or smell and so it is essential that appliances are properly installed and serviced and have sufficient ventilation. Apart from regular chimney and flue sweeping it is strongly recommended that a carbon monoxide detector is installed in homes.
A sure way to flood your living room!!
But it might not be avoidable if a chimney fire occurs due to poor maintenance.