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  • Oven cleaning/Chimney soot

    Hello. Finishing my first summer using oven in my new outdoor kitchen setup. There seems significant soot buildup around door and up into the flue. Need I clean this and is it possible to do myself? Would rather not hire chimney sweep for 4 feet of cleaning. Suggestions on how appreciated.

  • #2
    Hi Chamwi12,

    Welcome to the forum. There will be a little soot buildup even after a single firing. What you call a "significant buildup" may not impress some of us. That said, soot and creosote build up can lead to a chimney fire. Open fireplace chimneys should be cleaned yearly. Wood fired ovens run at a lot higher temperature with less soot and creosote buildup when they are fired correctly. Using properly dried wood and fire management practices will significantly reduce this problem. I haven't ever cleaned my oven's chimney/flue. I haven't seen any signs that it really needs it.

    However, I have cleaned chimneys. The best way to clean a chimney or flue is from the top down. That means that the cap and/or spark arrestor need to be installed in a way that they can be removed for cleaning. There are wire brushes available for just about any size flue. They can be kind of expensive. A weighted croker sack filled with sponge foam or balled up newpapers can be formed to the sides of most chimney shapes. For a four foot run, a plain old scrub brush duct taped to a long paint roller handle would easily do the job. It don't take much to dislodge the buildup. Just block the oven with the insulated door. Then cover the ovens entry floor and the immediate area with an old sheet or a fabric drop cloth. Roll a foot or so up in the back of the entry. Tape the ends of the sheet to cover the oven opening. Then proceed with cleaning. Let the dust settle and then remove the tape, unroll the sheet from the back and slowly fold the sheet to trap the soot. Carefully seal in a plastic garbage bag.

    Disclaimer: The cleaning schedule for chimneys and flues for any wood burning appliance and their proximity to homes are other structures may fall under insurance, local and national fire codes. These codes may require that the cleaning and inspections be done a certified chimney sweep. .
    Joe Watson, "A year from now, you will have wished that you had started today"
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