As a homeowner, it’s important to take care of your property and ensure everything is working efficiently. One area of your home that requires regular attention is the chimney. Annual inspections and regular maintenance of your chimney can prevent fires, carbon monoxide poisoning, and other hazards.

But can you inspect your chimney on your own? Or is it best to trust a professional? Well, while it is possible to clean your chimney yourself, it is not recommended. Chimney cleaning can be dangerous and messy, and without the proper equipment and knowledge, it can be easy to overlook potential risks.

At Wolfman Chimney and Fireplace, we want to make sure you are fully informed and protected when it comes to understanding all the components of servicing your chimney. Our goal is to provide you with everything you need to operate your system as safely as possible.

Why Are Chimney Inspections Important?

A chimney inspection is a crucial aspect of home maintenance. It helps to identify any issues that could potentially lead to hazards. Regular inspections ensure that your chimney is ready for use and working efficiently, and they also help to identify any potential repairs that need to be done before they turn into major issues.

Are There Factors to Consider Before I Inspect My Own Chimney?

Before you decide to inspect your chimney on your own, there are some important factors to consider.

  1. Knowledge & Experience: Chimney inspections require a certain level of knowledge and experience. If you’re not familiar with the anatomy of a chimney, you could easily miss important details that could indicate a potential problem. It’s important to have a comprehensive understanding of how chimneys work, know what to look for, and know how to safely access your chimney.
  2. Safety Measures & Equipment: Completing a chimney inspection can be dangerous. You’ll need to make sure you have the necessary safety equipment, including a ladder, safety harness, and appropriate clothing. You should also wear a respirator, and someone should be present to help you, if needed.
  3. Chimney Accessibility: Before you start inspecting your chimney, you need to determine if it’s accessible. If your chimney is located on the roof or in a difficult-to-reach area, it may be difficult to safely access it. 

Are There Different Levels of Chimney Inspections?

There are three levels of chimney inspections, ranging from a simple visual inspection to a more invasive inspection that may require special tools.

Level 1 Chimney Inspection

This is the most basic type of inspection and is recommended for chimneys that have been regularly maintained and are not experiencing any issues. During a Level 1 inspection, a chimney professional will examine the readily accessible portions of your chimney, including the interior and exterior, to check for any signs of damage, blockages, or other potential hazards.

Level 2 Chimney Inspection

This inspection is recommended if you’ve recently experienced a chimney fire, made a significant change to your chimney system, or are planning to sell your home. In addition to the visual inspection included in a Level 1 inspection, a Level 2 inspection includes an internal digital camera inspection of the interior of your chimney to check for any damage that may not be visible to the naked eye.

Level 3 Chimney Inspection

This is the most invasive type of inspection and is only recommended if a Level 1 or Level 2 inspection reveals a serious issue that requires further investigation. A Level 3 inspection may involve removing components of your chimney or home to access hard-to-reach areas.

What are the Pros and Cons of Inspecting My Own Chimney?


  • Cost: Inspecting your own chimney can save you money on professional inspection fees. That said, if important issues are overlooked, this could cost you more down the line.
  • Convenience: You can inspect your chimney at any time that is convenient for you, without having to schedule an appointment with a professional.
  • Knowledge: By inspecting your own chimney, you might gain a better understanding of how it works and how to maintain it properly.


    • Lack of Expertise: Chimney inspections require specialized knowledge and equipment. If you don’t know what you’re looking for, you may miss potential hazards.
    • Safety: Climbing on your roof to inspect your chimney can be dangerous, especially if you don’t have experience working at heights.
    • Liability: If you miss a hazard during your inspection and a fire occurs, you may be held liable for damages.

    Is it Important to Call a Certified, Professional Chimney Inspector?

    While it’s technically possible to inspect your chimney on your own, it’s always recommended to call out a professional chimney inspector to handle the job. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recommends that chimneys be inspected annually by a certified technician. By choosing a qualified and reputable company and scheduling regular maintenance, you can ensure that your chimney is functioning correctly and efficiently for years to come. That peace of mind is priceless!

    The certified sweeps here at Wolfman have undergone extensive training in the field of chimney maintenance, ensuring that they have the knowledge and skills to perform the job safely and effectively. Our experienced team follows all the necessary regulations and guidelines to ensure that your chimney inspection is done safely and effectively.

    Call us today at 830-620-9130 to schedule an appointment or book online now.