How to clean the woodstove after a visit from a squirrel?
January 27, 2020 5:25 PM   Subscribe

A squirrel fell down the chimney and into my woodstove. We caught and released it. Now I'm wondering if we have to do anything to clean the woodstove (is squirrel poop dangerous? not that I see any, but it was in there for two days) or if just the cleansing action of fire is sufficient.
posted by hungrytiger to Pets & Animals (5 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I’d want to be real sure there aren’t more squirrels or any nesting materials in your chimney before I lit another fire. Otherwise I think a nice hot fire is good sterilization.
posted by spitbull at 5:27 PM on January 27, 2020 [11 favorites]

Any smoke will be venting out the chimney. So even if there is poop, you wont be breathing it.

Please check your stove pipe and chimney first to check for extra squirrels.
posted by ananci at 12:03 AM on January 28, 2020

And maybe get some kind of cap on the chimney to prevent animals and birds from falling in.
posted by essexjan at 2:20 AM on January 28, 2020 [2 favorites]

Yeah to be clear my concern is with a chimney fire, not poop.
posted by spitbull at 3:39 AM on January 28, 2020 [1 favorite]

And yes you should have mesh on the chimney. It’s a code requirement for stove installations where I live.

And you should get your chimney professionally cleaned and inspected before every fire season. Accept no substitute. Chimney fires are serious shit.

And because they’re cheap every wood stove should have two Chimfex chimney fire extinguishers (you scratch them and throw them into the burning stove) real near. And a proper fire extinguisher, CO and smoke alarms need to be in the home. Gaskets need to be checked and replaced regularly. Stoves and chimneys need to be inspected for structural integrity and glazing.

And squirrels, apparently.
posted by spitbull at 6:21 AM on January 28, 2020 [4 favorites]

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