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Access and safety when fitting liners

There are many ways to make chimney lining safe:

DO NOT USE LADDERS UNLESS YOU KNOW HOW TO USE THEM PROPERLY AND DO NOT USE THEM WHEN IT IS WINDY (I was on a ladder that moved sideways a couple of feet in a gust and it really was not that windy).

1. Scaffolding: usually the safest method but expensive.

2. Cherry picker: less expensive than scaffolding but not always feasible (I hire the orange beast pictured below at approx. £300 for two days).

3. Ladders and cat ladders (with safety harness/lanyard): sometimes all that is required but usually used alongside (4).

4. Create your own timber additions: it is completely feasible to build a simple chimney scaffold using wood and suitable bolts (e.g. Thunderbolts).



cherrypicker and chimney liner

A £60,000 cherry picker. Approx. £200 to hire for one day with subsequent days £100.

ladders for liner

What happens when the cherrypicker fails to arrive (note that I did use a climbing rope/harness etc.). Note the wooden platform.


Scaffolding is great but expensive


Scaffolding for twin wall flue (make sure the scaffolding is far enough away from the building if fitting external twin wall flue).

scaffold for lining two difficult access chimneys

Some chimneys require scaffolding (the householder went to take a look at the chimney but fear prevented him climbing past the guttering 🙂

regulations chimney lining

Note the steepness of this roof – steep rooves certainly increase the likelihood of you “shaking like a wet lurcher”. I have a small chimney scaffold and it can be very useful. Prior to purchasing the small scaffold (April 2013) I would usually use ladder/cat ladder and rope and climbing harness in this situation and add wooden platforms where appropriate. If difficult chimney then scaffolding or cherry picker or another type frame


001: Not high but still tricky.


001: Length of wood Thunderbolted to stack and ladder screwed to length of wood.. Plywood on ladder to prevent feet falling through.


002: Impossible to do with just a ladder. Make sure they are structurally sound (they can sway and wobble!).


002: The wood is screwed to the stack using Thunderbolts. The ladder has Thunderbolts preventing the small ladder moving. Secure plywood on the ladder to walk on.

Ricketts 1

003: at first glance looks horrible and scaffolding is certainly an option.

Ricketts 2

003: The platform provided full security and fitting the liner was not difficult. Once again Thunderbolts were used to bolt a length of wood to the stack and the quickly made platform was screwed to this.

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