Our Company Blog

Best Sweeps in New England

It takes a lot of effort, training, and experience to get to be the best in any industry. While we put in our fair share of work at Billy Sweet Chimney Sweep, we have to put credit where it’s due. A lot of our success is because of the great communities we have served for over 30 years. The communities of Boston, North Shore, and Portland are unique in their own right, are saturated with American history, and have the best of both worlds–big city necessities and small-town values. Once you visit, you’ll want to stay!

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To talk about your Boston chimney and hearth supplies, you may want to call our Boston office at 617-469-4528. For everything else Boston, you have to see it to believe it! This beautiful community has the finest museums, the oldest architecture, and the best of New England food, festivities, and features for all. 

Local Eats – You can dine in jeans or black-tie and still get the best Boston has to offer. Stop in at Neptune Oyster for clam chowder, fresh fish, and more.  Visit Fenway Park and walk in the same halls as Babe Ruth and Ted Williams. Relive the iconic Revolutionary act with a tour of Boston Tea Party Ships and Museum. If you newly reside in the area, scope out your favorite parks to picnic and play. Boston is a great family city, whether visiting or relocating. We even have dog parks for Rover!

North Shore

With all the big-city feel of Boston, but all the small town wonder of ivy, our North Shore communities boast history and culture as well as shore life. Explore the haunting true stories of those lost with a visit to the Witch Trials Memorial and Salem Witch Museum. Take the family on a learning experience at various area farms and finish with some fun at a trampoline park or recreation area. Danvers and North Shore area boast a variety of global cuisine, as well as American style soups and sandwiches, and fine Italian as well. You’ll never get stuck in a rut with all the options you’ll find here. 

Portland

The unique location of Portland makes it wholly unique to the rest of Maine. In terms of weather, Portland is a few weeks behind Boston, and a few weeks ahead of Northern Maine. You can find small businesses throughout the area, even downtown Portland, and as much seafood as you can possibly eat. The area has a variety of neighborhoods and communities, great for families, singles, students, and professionals. We love to work with all types of home and business owners, and Portland is full of life!

If you reside in any of our service areas and haven’t ventured out of the house all winter, now is a great time! The weather is getting more mild by the day, and depending on where you live, spring may be visiting before you know it. 

While you are planning your spring outings, don’t forget to also plan your chimney and vent maintenance. Billy Sweet Chimney Sweep specializes in historical chimneys and winter damage — both commonly seen in our area of New England. We can help you this spring. 

Call one of our offices to schedule with us today.

Boston: 617-469-4528

North Shore: 781-593-2333

Portland: 207-773-7933

How to Prepare Your Chimney & Fireplace For The Upcoming Winter

Some parts of the country may be experiencing record highs, but if you live in the Boston area, North Shore, or the Portland area, winter is inevitable. Have you done everything needed to prepare your chimney and fireplace for the upcoming rough weather? Let Billy Sweet Chimney Sweep help! Our Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) certified chimney sweeps provide comprehensive chimney and fireplace care and know just what it takes to keep your chimney system looking and working great all winter long.

It All Starts With A Thorough Inspection Performed By A CSIA-Certified Sweep

winter chimney sweep - Boston MA - Billy Sweet Chimney Sweep

When we’re called upon to get your chimney and fireplace ready for the next burn season, the experienced technicians here at Billy Sweet Chimney Sweep come equipped with state-of-the-art equipment so we can analyze the system and make sure it’s still in peak condition. We start with a thorough inspection, using video scanning technology to check both the interior and exterior components of your chimney system for damage, blockages, or other problems that could interfere with the safety and efficiency of your chimney and fireplace. Most chimney and fireplace damage is the result of an undetected or unrepaired leak, improper construction, animal tampering or intrusion, or time and use. Some of the most vulnerable or damage-prone areas are:

  • Chimney Crown
  • Chimney Cap
  • Chimney Masonry
  • Damper
  • Firebox
  • Smoke Chamber
  • Flue Liner

We’ll also check the connected appliance (be it a fireplace, a stove, or an insert) and make sure that everything is properly connected and functioning efficiently. We’ll make note of any flaws or defects, weak points, or areas of concern so you know just what needs to be done and where before lighting up a fire.

Request An Appointment With The Team You Can Trust

Whether you have a stove, a fireplace, or an insert, it’s important that you schedule an annual inspection with a CSIA-certified chimney sweep prior to your first fire of the year. Our team will carefully evaluate your system, clean it from top to bottom (if needed), and make any necessary repairs to restore your system so you can enjoy it all winter long. If you haven’t scheduled your appointment yet, give us a call! We’ll make sure your chimney and fireplace are in great shape and ready to keep you warm, no matter how brutal this winter turns out to be. Call or click to request your appointment today!

Do a Chimney Cleaning and Inspection Before the Rush

Now that summertime is coming to a close and the kids have returned to school, we can enjoy shift into fall. The time of year filled with changing colors, crunchy leaves and pumpkin carving has begun, in addition to the promise of cooler weather. While the first few days of fall might warm up in remembrance of a sizzling summer, the weather will eventually cool off. Before you know it, snow will cover the ground in the midst of a furious New England winter.

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Usually, now is when everyone shuts off the central air conditioning and opens the windows to keep everyone comfortable in the house. For many, starting up the fireplace is a passing thought in the back of their mind, but sooner or later the time will come to build that first fire. These same people who fail to remember their fireplaces until high time must battle the busiest season to find a service person who is free to inspect and clean their chimney.

Instead of rushing right before your holiday get-together to have your chimney cleaned, schedule a date for regular maintenance now. Starting in fall, the chimney cleaning services are swamped, and it lasts through the holidays. Many companies book up several weeks in advance at this time, and as the weeks go by and the temperature drops, any snow and ice may make it impossible to get on the roof anyway.

Call Billy Sweet Chimney Sweep today to make an appointment to have your chimney swept and inspected. Billy Sweet Chimney Sweep works out of Eastern Massachusetts, Southern New Hampshire, and the Portland, Maine area.

This business provides reasonably priced chimney sweeping services in addition to inspections that meet the most up to date codes set by the National Fire Protection Association. Along with each inspection, Billy Sweet offers a courtesy video scanning of the inside of your chimney with Chim-scan products. You receive a comprehensive overview of the condition of your chimney with this closed circuit video inspection, and it aids you in making the right decision on repairs and updates.

You should have your fireplace and chimney inspected once every year, but especially if you recently moved into a new house, your fireplace has been inactive for an extended time or if you have run into any problems with the fireplace. The freeze-thaw cycle of a New England winter and any water leaks into the masonry may result in structural harm to the chimney, which needs to be inspected annually. If a fireplace has lay dormant for some time, such as since it was used last winter, pests like birds may have made a home of the chimney and created an obstructed vent. Lighting a fire in a fireplace with a clogged vent poses serious risks to your house and family.

With summer wrapping up and fireplace time quickly approaching, right now is the best time to make your chimney sweep and inspection appointment with Billy Sweet Chimney Sweep.

The Appalling Truth about Spalling

Did you know your chimney could sweat? Did you know that this process is actually very harmful to your chimney? Well now that it has been brought up, you must learn all the facts. When the bricks of your chimney sweat, spalling can start to occur. If you feel like this could be happening with your chimney, call the professionals at Billy Sweet Chimney Sweep.

What is chimney spalling and how is it caused?

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Spalling is what happens when the bricks or stones on your masonry chimney start to come off in flakes or start to go missing because of water penetration. One of the first signs is when you find random bricks on the ground or on your roof. Often times the main cause of spalling is when the water absorbed in the bricks from precipitation freezes and thaws. This can be worsened by the condensation of flue gases in liners that are not the right size, or gaps and cracks in the interior mortar joints. Also, spalling is made more prominent when extra water enters the interior by way of the chimney chase. Softer types of bricks are more likely to have moisture penetration, but are often used over harder types of bricks because they are more cost-friendly.

The chimney will be one of the first places that will show that it has damage since it is constantly exposed to the elements. The spalling will start with the top portions but once one part of the chimney starts to spall the whole inside has already been damaged. These bricks must be replaced since they are permanently damaged.

How can you prevent spalling?

There is no complete way to protect your chimney from water damage, but there are a few things that you can do to help. First, you need to have your chimney waterproofed. Your chimney technician can do that on any dry day after they sweep. The layer of sealant will need about six hours to dry so it is important to plan ahead. If you live somewhere where it rains often, you might look into having a second coat applied. Chimney caps are also another great way to help keep water out, as well as animals and leaves, but must be properly installed to be safe.