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Old 06.11.2008, 12:13
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Chimney Sweep...[Fireplace Chimney Check]

I keep getting hassled by the local chimney sweep, who wants to sweep our chimney....I keep trying to explain to him, that we don't use the fireplace. Anyway his latest argument is that it's the law that all chimney's have to swept once a year regardless if it used or not....Is this true??

Thanks
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Old 06.11.2008, 12:20
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Re: Chimney Sweep...

As far as I know, it is mandatory that chimneys have to be cleaned periodically. It's a requirement of the Cantonal Fire Police and the building insurance. It's probably best to check with your local authorities on this. If you live in your own house then it's your responsibility; if you live in a rented apartment, check with the rental agency.

Here's a link for the Canton Zurich - pages 5, 6, 7 show which kind of heating systems' chimneys have to be professionally cleaned how often:
http://www.gvz.ch/FEUERPOLIZEI/Porta...ngsanlagen.pdf

P.S. I just saw that if a chimney is used only very seldom (or, in your case, not at all) then it must still be checked periodically (this applies for Cant. Zurich). The relevant Cantonal department will be able to tell you how often.

Last edited by möpp; 06.11.2008 at 12:28. Reason: added p.s.
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Old 06.11.2008, 12:33
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Re: Chimney Sweep...

In the canton of Vaud it is a legal requirement. The receipt is your proof that it was cleaned if there is a fire in the building.

I rent the apt. and I pay for the cleaning. This may of course vary by the rental agreement that you have.
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Old 06.11.2008, 12:36
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Re: Chimney Sweep...

The chimney for your oil or gas fired boiler needs to be cleaned once per year by law.

My experience is that there is no legal requirement for normal fireplace chimneys (my chimney sweep refused to clean ours saying it wasn't dirty enough)
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Old 06.11.2008, 12:47
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Re: Chimney Sweep...

I refused to have the 1 metre long flue of my gas central heating boiler swept by our local sweep.

They announced they were coming by post card and arrived as they had promised with dirty faces top hats and coils of chimney clean things. I asked how much it would cost. They replied that it was the accounts department that sent out bills and they didn't know.

I also asked them if could tell me how much soot is produced by a gas heating boiler. They had no idea, so I enlightened them: none.

They threatened to inform the fire police. Who indeed phoned the next day to explain that it was a Cantonal law (ZH) that all heating chimney should be swept every 2 years. I asked why we had not seen a chimney sweep for the 5 previous years - no answer.

I asked the soot question. He at least knew that only CO2 and water are produced. I informed him that there are approximately 15 million gas boilers in the UK and wondered if he could tell me how many were swept. The answer is none.

In the end the Fire guy agreed that it was stupid and that like typewriter repair men, our local chimney sweeps should seek new employment and that if I took full responsibility for the chimney I could be exempt.

I should add that we paid over CHF400 for a service/maintenance contract and even paid the Fire Police CHF35 to inspect the system when commissioned.

So tell them to clear off. If you don't let them in the the door they can do nothing...
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Old 06.11.2008, 12:51
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Re: Chimney Sweep...

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The chimney for your oil or gas fired boiler needs to be cleaned once per year by law.

My experience is that there is no legal requirement for normal fireplace chimneys (my chimney sweep refused to clean ours saying it wasn't dirty enough)

In the canton of Vaud, you have to clean fireplace chimneys. It is confirmed that the renter pays for the cleaning unless you have a rental agreement that includes all expenses. Details/link in French:

http://www.ramoneurs-vd.ch/proprieta...s_ramonage.htm
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Old 06.11.2008, 12:52
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Re: Chimney Sweep...

Many thanks to all replies...I do live in Vaud..so perhaps I will be less dismissive when he next calls

Thanks
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Old 06.11.2008, 13:18
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Re: Chimney Sweep...

We use our fire most nights in the winter, so are happy to have a sweep once a year, here in Fribourg it costs CHf85 so feel it's worth it considering the amount of use our fire has.
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Old 06.11.2008, 14:46
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Re: Chimney Sweep...

I had the same issue with the local chimney sweep company. I told the guy I was using it less than 10 times a year and he agreed with me to do it once every two years instead.
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Old 09.11.2008, 08:16
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Re: Chimney Sweep...

I think this is a jobs for the boys game.
We had our chimney swept and boiler checked out by the local sweep a year after moving in to a brand-new aprtment. There then began a series of problems with the boiler which resulted in significant inconvenience and expense. When I sent the bills to the chimney sweep he didn't even acknowledge my letter, let alone pay them.
When he next announced his intention to visit us we refused. We then entere into correspodnece with a number of cantonal departments I didn't know existed as well as the commune.
Bottom-line - and many letters and official appeals later - we are obliged to have the work done and the chimney sweep in question has the monoply in our commune. The syndique (mayor) did not consider that we had grounds for refusing him.
I learnt afterwards that in many communes the monopoly on chimney sweeping is awarded on the basis of under-the-table sweetners to local councilors and that Joe Punter has no chance of fighting against what is another example of the no-competion, screw-the-customer, Swiss approach.
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Old 09.11.2008, 08:34
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Re: Chimney Sweep...

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I think this is a jobs for the boys game.
We had our chimney swept and boiler checked out by the local sweep a year after moving in to a brand-new aprtment. There then began a series of problems with the boiler which resulted in significant inconvenience and expense. When I sent the bills to the chimney sweep he didn't even acknowledge my letter, let alone pay them.
When he next announced his intention to visit us we refused. We then entere into correspodnece with a number of cantonal departments I didn't know existed as well as the commune.
Bottom-line - and many letters and official appeals later - we are obliged to have the work done and the chimney sweep in question has the monoply in our commune. The syndique (mayor) did not consider that we had grounds for refusing him.
I learnt afterwards that in many communes the monopoly on chimney sweeping is awarded on the basis of under-the-table sweetners to local councilors and that Joe Punter has no chance of fighting against what is another example of the no-competion, screw-the-customer, Swiss approach.
At least here in Aargau, you can use anyone you want for the sweeping and the emissions check. You will receive a proposal from the appointed Gemeinde sweep but as long as you or your chosen sweep file your documentation before the deadline then you are covered.

By the way, prices for the obligatory inspections are fixed at the Cantonal (maybe even federal level). If the guy is servicing your boiler then of course it is a different story. The service is not obligatory and you can use whoever you want to do the work.
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Old 10.11.2008, 09:36
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Re: Chimney Sweep...

He came and swept today...it took less than 5mins (given that we haven't used the fire), not doubt the bill won't reflect this. On speaking with my neighbour he asssues me they are the equivalent of the local mafia and beyond the law
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Old 10.11.2008, 09:46
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Re: Chimney Sweep...

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He came and swept today...it took less than 5mins (given that we haven't used the fire), not doubt the bill won't reflect this. On speaking with my neighbour he asssues me they are the equivalent of the local mafia and beyond the law
Well they've won again. You should have simply said 'no' and not let them in your property. Expect a bill in excess of CHF100...
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Old 05.10.2010, 12:57
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Re: Chimney Sweep...

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Here's a link for the Canton Zurich - pages 5, 6, 7 show which kind of heating systems' chimneys have to be professionally cleaned how often:
http://www.gvz.ch/FEUERPOLIZEI/Porta...ngsanlagen.pdf

P.S. I just saw that if a chimney is used only very seldom (or, in your case, not at all) then it must still be checked periodically (this applies for Cant. Zurich). The relevant Cantonal department will be able to tell you how often.
Wanted to ask about a chimney sweep, and by the powers of search came across this thread. We are in the Canton of Zuerich, and going by the PDF linked above, we just need to get the chimney (not main source of heating, will only occasionally be used, and just for wood) checked out every 5 years.

Will post back how much it cost onece done.
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Old 05.10.2010, 13:13
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Re: Chimney Sweep...

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Well they've won again. You should have simply said 'no' and not let them in your property. Expect a bill in excess of CHF100...
I hope they did a show first...

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Old 05.10.2010, 13:28
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Re: Chimney Sweep...

Cor blimey me old mucker!
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Old 05.10.2010, 14:56
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Re: Chimney Sweep...

When he comes to sweep our chimneys in our building I note that in our accounts if you use your chimney at all you are billed around 70 odd francs - however if he checks your chimney and you have not used it you are billed about 10 chfs - that is in VD.
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Old 07.03.2012, 19:38
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Re: Chimney Sweep...

Five years in our house... and now we have a sweep. Can't get rid of them. Apparently snipers and mantraps are illegal.

For anyone in Baselland, the relevant laws and tariffs are here:

Laws: http://www.baselland.ch/761-111-htm.301803.0.html
Fees: http://www.baselland.ch/761-17-htm.301805.0.html

Nice work if you can get it - 60CHF just for turning up. It's going to be fun. We don't use our fireplace, haven't in 5 years and never intend to use it. Our heating is gas, and we have a service contract which gets it serviced every year.

We'll have a chat with our Gemeinde office tomorrow, and with the company that services our boiler. Any bill we get will be gone over with a fine-toothed comb.

Our next door neighbours are going to have even more fun. They removed their fireplace four years ago...
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Old 07.03.2012, 19:50
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Re: Chimney Sweep...

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I keep getting hassled by the local chimney sweep, who wants to sweep our chimney....I keep trying to explain to him, that we don't use the fireplace. Anyway his latest argument is that it's the law that all chimney's have to swept once a year regardless if it used or not....Is this true??

Thanks
Are you in a flat or your own house? What sort of central heating have you got?

In Neuchatel it is compulsory. We have to pay ECAP which is a compulsory fire insurance, no choice in the matter. The Commune would send the cops if you refused, and your fire insurance would be nul and void in case of a fire- even if the cause is totally separate from your chimney. My old dad complained to his mate who was the chimney sweep that it was a licence to print money, the guy replied 'Ben André, t'avais qu'à faire ramoneur' in his strong Bernese accent
'Well André, why didn't you become a chimney sweep'.

We use our wood burner all the time though, and have oil central heating- so fair enough.
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Old 07.03.2012, 22:03
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Re: Chimney Sweep...

The other responses are correct... it is the law. Our guy comes twice a year (whether we want him to or not)
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