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As a homesteader, you should have some way to heat your home. The ideal methods are:

  1. Wood cooktop stove
  2. Rocket stove/Rocket mass heater
  3. Outdoor wood furnace
  4. Fireplace insert/standalone wood stove
  5. Traditional fireplace

Most of these methods contain a stovepipe to channel the smoke and soot outside of the house. Over time, those pipes become lined with creosote, which is a by product of wood burning.

The creosote buildup can eventually be a fire hazard, and a chimney fire is a very dangerous situation. To prevent a fire you’ll need to sweep the chimney regularly to make sure the creosote does not build up.

If you pay a chimney sweep to come out, you’ll be dishing out about $150-$300. It’s actually cheaper to buy the tools and do it yourself. You’ll need a cleaning brush and rods.

  1. Seal off your fireplace so that no soot gets into your room
  2. Take the cap off your chimney
  3. Attach the broom to the rod and push the broom up and down the chimney, loosing the creosote as you go

That’s it. Your chimney is ready for another season of warm wood fires.