If you began to use your fireplace and noticed a funny smell escaping from the chimney, you may be dealing with a potentially dangerous inhalant. That is one reason that before you use your chimney every year it is very important to have a professional chimney sweep clean and inspect your fireplace and chimney.
Over the spring and summer months, when your chimney is not in use, many things can happen to cause an unusual smell to escape the first time you use your fireplace. Birds often nest in chimneys during warmer months, and when a chimney is heated, the nests can burn and cause an unpleasant smell. Also, sediment can settle into the walls of your chimney, and when it is used for the first time the sediment can heat, and cause a noticeable odor. More importantly, chimney sediment can also release harmful chemicals that may be dangerous if inhaled. The easiest way to avoid harmful inhalants and unpleasant odors when using your fireplace is to have your chimney professionally cleaned and inspected before you use it.