DFES - Department of Fire and Emergency Services
000 for fire or life threatening emergencies
132 500 for SES assistance
13 DFES (13 3337) for emergency information
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Chimneys and Flues

Ash, soot and combustion residue can build up on the inside of a chimney flue and if not physically removed regularly can ignite causing a fire. In most cases you will see flames shooting out of the top of the chimney.

DFES attends many of these types of fires during winter and most can be prevented by chimneys or flues being regularly cleaned.

We recommend that you check the heater, fireplace brickwork, chimney and flue before lighting the first fire of the year to make sure it is clean. This should be done for all metal flues and standard brick chimneys.

Additives can be purchased from your local hardware store to put in the fire while it is burning to help reduce residue build up in the chimney or flue.

If your fireplace chimney is brick, check that the surrounding fireplace brickwork has not cracked as this may identify a problem and reduce the chance of a fire creeping through the course in back wall.

Flues going into the ceiling and roof space should have double or triple skins to stop radiant heat igniting roof timbers or cellulose type insulation.

Many fires are caused by the incorrect installation of wood heaters by the home handy man or unqualified operators. DFES recommends all wood heaters being installed and maintained by a reputable business or tradesperson.

If your flue or chimney catches fire call Triple Zero (000) and ask for fire brigade assistance.

 

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