Smoke Testing your Chimney
If you are unsure about the condition of a chimney, or an old chimney is to be put in use after a long period time, it is advisable to have it smoke tested. It is also recommended that a smoke test is carried out during the construction of masonry chimneys and on completion of all chimney installations. A smoke test should always be carried out by a qualified person.
The purpose of the smoke test is to identify any faults which would cause fumes to escape during the normal operation of the appliance and chimney. Closing the bottom and top of the chimney during the test, will generate a positive pressure in the flue. This will force the smoke, generated by the pellet, to escape through gaps in the joints in a masonry chimney, or connections between pre-fabricated metal chimneys and flue pipes.
If significant or heavy smoke leakage is seen, the cause must be investigated and rectified. Broken components, incorrect fitting and incomplete jointing of flue liners are the most common problems which cause major leakage and require remedial action.