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No matter the appliance and no matter the fuel type, foul odors are something any chimney owner could face from time to time. Knowing the common causes of bad smells in your fireplace and how to fireplace & techappropriately address them can make a big difference in how comfortable and cozy your home stays throughout the year.

Most solutions are just a simple phone call away, thanks to our hard-working crew. Troubleshooting your chimney concerns and finding fixes that meet your needs is what we do best. Give us a call, and we will be happy to help you out. In the meantime, here are some of the causes for chimney odors and what can be done to keep your home smelling fresh.

Common Reasons For Bad Chimney Odors

Excess Moisture

There are lots of reasons why you do not want water in your flue or chimney. Exposure to too much moisture can results in all kinds of issues, like rusted flashing, rot throughout your system, broken down brickwork, crumbling mortar, and a whole lot more. And, as you may have guessed, all of this water can cause bad smells, too.

Bad odors occur when the water in your chimney mixes with the creosote. Creosote, in and of itself, does not smell great anyway, and it when it combines with water, the smell is accentuated that much more.

Fortunately, you can reduce water-related problems altogether by investing in leak prevention services. Waterproofing your brickwork, replacing a faulty chimney cap, patching up your crown, and installing flashing are all effective strategies when it comes to keeping your system dry and in better shape. A little maintenance can go a long way!


Creosote is a dangerous substance that results from incomplete wood burn. It’s not exactly known for its great aroma, and when a lot of it builds up inside of your chimney, you are bound to smell some nasty odors. As stated above, water does not help this equation a bit, but even without moisture problems, creosote will cause bad smells in your home if it is not removed.

A chimney sweeping will resolve creosote issues in a hurry. This not only helps to improve a smelly situation, it also helps your system function safer, since creosote is highly flammable and can easily trigger a chimney fire. As you can imagine, chimney fires cause a lot of damage, which can then bring about more problems, as well as encourage dangerous gases and hot embers to enter the home.

All in all, having creosote removed by a qualified team of sweeps is vital if you are a fireplace owner. Reduce odors and minimize the risk of danger by calling in our expert staff to handle any and all of your fireplace needs right away.

Animal Invasion

When animals enter your chimney, the end results are never good. Whether they bring in stinky nesting materials, leave behind urine and feces, or get stuck and die in the chimney, they can easily trigger some unpleasant smells in your system. Unfortunately, it is hard to keep them out, since your chimney is so sturdy, warm, and inviting.

If you already have an animal in your chimney, dead or alive, you will need to call in an expert as soon as possible to get it out. It is not safe (for you or them) to have a critter stuck in your flue. Not to mention, dead animals are sure to attract other pests in no time, which will leave you with even bigger problems on your hands.

Having a chimney cap installed is a surefire way to keep curious creatures out for good. It is an affordable investment that will save you some big headaches down the line, so do not hesitate to contact our team about getting one put on.


Thanks to creosote and buildup, all chimneys smell bad. Yet, we do not always notice these odors because, in the wintertime, the warm air inside of the home pushes all those terrible smells up and out of the chimney.

Unfortunately, once the weather warms up outside and the air outside gets warmer than the air inside, the home sucks in that outside air like a snorkel. As that air enters the home, it brings the smells in the chimney with it, and that’s the time when you  may especially struggle with bad odors. Because of this, we tend to get a lot of calls about chimney odors once the days become hotter and more humid.

What can you do to prevent this, aside from making sure your chimney is cleaned every year? Invest in tight-fitting fireplace glass doors to minimize odors, or try to introduce some make up air into your home to help balance things out. A top-sealing damper would also work wonders in keeping out warm air, and it will prevent animal entry, as well. Call our crew with any questions you have about these solutions today.

Gas Logs

Do your gas logs smell?

Gas logs tend to come with a naturally stinky odor, so if you are using new gas logs, you may need to wait out the bad smells as they go through their burn off period. This also applies to the start of the season when the dust and dander that has accumulated over the spring and summer months burns off. In these cases, the smell will likely last around four to eight hours.

Other times, new paint or new carpet can trigger bad smells from your gas logs once you light them up. In these cases, a simple solution could be to, again, wait it out. As the paint and/or carpet cure and age, the smell will fade.

Do you like to light candles? This also causes bad odors when combined with the fumes produced by your gas logs, as do smells that come with pet hair and dander. Your best bet may be to stop lighting candles in the room your fireplace is in and to keep that area especially clean and free of your pet’s fur.

What Is The First Best Step?

Now that you know some of the biggest causes of bad chimney odors, your next thought is likely, “How do I stop these bad smells from occurring time and time again?” Well, a thorough cleaning is one of the best ways to address and resolve any problems relating to unpleasant chimney smells. This is always a good first step to take, because it will allow us to remove any creosote and animals/animal-related debris, and pinpoint and seal any cracks or areas that may be allowing moisture in. If you keep up with regular maintenance, you should notice a significant positive impact when it comes to the smells associated with your chimney.

Of course, you’ll want to be sure to trust in an experienced and qualified sweep for the job. Missing any steps along the way can result in some frustrating issues, and you need to ensure everything is out if you want those terrible odors to be gone for good. Relying on a professional is always the best route to take!

Next, let us handle any necessary repairs. We can ensure your system is in great condition and defended against all of the factors that are known to stink things up. In no time, you will be set up to prevent water, animals, downdrafts, and more, ensuring your home remains stink-free all year long.

Call Today

Don’t wait to resolve your odor problems. A well-maintained and regularly swept chimney does not typically interfere with the pleasant aromas in your home. Plus, regular maintenance guarantees better fireplace health. For a safer, better functioning, and better smelling system, schedule an appointment with Ashbusters. You deserve the best services around, and that’s just what we provide.