Cleaning the family fireplace is often something forgotten about or rushed during the routine weekly clean. Coming up to this holiday season it may just be something that will make the room come together and allow it to become a lovely centrepiece to the room. There’s a few simple steps it will just take you 15-20 minutes to have a pristine fireplace:

Extract debris: Put on your protective eyewear, paper mask, and old clothing. With a large pail lined with a garbage bag by the fireplace, and a drop cloth in place, extract large debris from the fireplace.

Sweep and vacuum fireplace: Sweep up ash and soot and scoop into the garbage bag. Vacuum residual soot and ashes out of the fireplace. Use of your home vacuum is not advised as it can cause the filter to clog, but there are specialised ash vacuums that may be a good investment in the long-run as it will also make day to day cleans much easier.

Scrape and brush walls: Scrape and brush off any flakes that may be on the walls of your fireplace or stove. You will notice a large amount of soot and flakes being removed simply transfer the waste to the trash bag.

Scrub off soot: Mix 1 gallon warm water and bleach in the bucket. Scrub away the last grime, using the brush tip and collecting everything on the drop cloth. Scour the fireplace floor with the cleaning solution. Soak up solution using paper towels. Discard in the garbage bag and wipe up any remaining water with old rags.

Clean grates: Take the fireplace grates outside. Place grates into a bucket or basin and allow to soak oven cleaner or bleach and water. When you’ve allowed them to soak for a few minutes scrub grates with a sponge or scour.

Clean doors and metal: If you have a stove simply use glass cleaner and newspapers to clean fireplace doors. Polish any exterior metal. When finished, clean the entire area with fresh water and dirt-free towels and let dry.

It may seem like an effort at the time but doing it once a year can prove beneficial and help bring a room together for the holiday season.