Chimney Sweeps clean private, public and industrial furnaces and exhaust pipes (chimneys and flues) and check them on the basis of legal provisions. They create reports about changed or reassembled chimneys. They advise customers about combustion and heating technologies, and also with regard to environment and energy saving.
The prime responsibilities of Chimney Sweeps are fire protection and fire safety. Chimney Sweeps work for clients on the premises that clients own or are responsible for. The locations for their work may be accessible or inaccessible, such as high roofs, attics and basements. Chimney Sweeps work is both routine and in response to problems. They provide regular maintenance and also undertake repairs. They inspect and report on installations in relation to both current and new legislation and regulations. They play a key role in responding to environmental concerns and energy saving. The Chimney Sweeps role may be highly practical, largely advisory and consultative, or a mixture of all of these. Increasingly sophisticated instruments for detecting hazards (such as carbon monoxide and fine particles) and reducing heat loss enable all types of premises and clients to be well served by qualified Chimney Sweeps.
The Chimney Sweep may either be self-employed or employed by companies of different sizes and specialisms. He or she may be one of a team in a large company offering a range of specialisms, or a sole trader with a largely domestic client base. Whether or not he or she works in a team, strong interpersonal skills are essential qualities where he or she has direct contact with the client and is dependent on their continuing confidence and satisfaction.
This role has both deep roots in the past and also a secure future, given growing concerns for personal safety, the environment and energy efficiency. There is scope for both career and business development through specialization and/or entrepreneurship.