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Industrial Chimney Inspection FAQs

What structures do you inspect?
What are your methods of inspections?
Why should we have regular inspections?
What are NDT (Non Destructive Testing) methods?
Why is Rope Access the best way to perform industrial chimney inspections & testing?


The rope access professionals at IA field many questions regarding our Industrial Chimney Inspection & Testing services. This guide should offer some insight on the “why’s” “what’s” and “how’s” of industrial chimney inspections:


What structures do you inspect?

Inspecting an industrial chimneyIndustrial Access offers Class I, II, and III inspections on a range of components on industrial chimney structures and smokestacks of all designs, even those without ladders. We inspect:

  • Structural Supports & Platforms
  • Flue Liners
  • Surface Strength
  • FRP Structures
  • Lightning Protection Systems
  • Aviation Lights
  • Breaching Ducts
  • Ladders
  • Guy Wires
  • And much, much more!


What are your methods of inspections?

Industrial Chimney Inspections can be done in a manner of different ways depending on the specific needs & environment of the facility or plant. We provide binocular inspections, ladder climbing inspections, visual/telephotographic inspections, non-destructive testing methods, and of course Class I, Class II, and Class III Inspections via rope access techniques.

Class I Inspections: this type of inspection is mainly visual and can be performed while the chimney or stack is online and operating.  A chimney technician first inspects the structure using binoculars from ground level and then performs a close-up visual inspection from access ladders, platforms or other accessible vantage points.

Class II Inspections: this type of inspection is performed with the chimney or smokestack off-line.  We utilize rope access equipment and methods to take a close look at the inside and the outside of the industrial chimney or smokestack. Our crew installs the required rigging to the top of the stack, then descend down the entire elevation of the structure, on both outside and inside, to note & document the structure’s current condition and any abnormalities, damage, or potential hazards.

Class III Inspections: this type of inspection is done when the industrial chimney or stack was damaged due to severe weather, earthquakes, explosions, overheating, or other natural disasters. This level of industrial chimney inspection should be completed immediately to ensure that the structure does not pose any safety hazards.


Why should we have regular inspections?

Regular industrial chimney inspections are critical, not only to ensure efficient operation but also to keep your employees and facility safe. The best way to avoid costly repairs and service expenses is to maintain regular preventative maintenance checks. This includes full inspections to check structural integrity and stability. An inspection can also ensure that all emission regulations are being met.


What are NDT (Non Destructive Testing) methods and are they important to an inspection?

Non Destructive TestingNon Destructive Testing methods are used to determine the structural integrity of industrial chimneys and smokestacks. Over time and with extended usage, industrial chimneys can degrade or begin to break down. NDT methods are utilized to examine the condition and strength of a structure without affecting its usefulness or performance.

Because NDT methods are comparatively inexpensive and require little to no facility outages, they have become a popular choice for testing structural integrity during chimney & smokestack inspections. Here are a few types of NDT methods we use during our industrial chimney inspections:

  • Ultrasonic Thickness Testing
  • Schmidt Hammer Testing
  • Infared Thermography
  • Laser Surveys
  • Hot Camera Inspections


Why is Rope Access the best way to perform industrial chimney inspections & testing?

Thanks to the many benefits of rope access, it still remains to be the easiest solution for the toughest maintenance tasks, including industrial chimney inspections and testing. When it comes to working at height, in tight spaces, or in difficult-to-reach areas, industrial rope access provides cost-effective and quick solutions that can help facility owners save money & time.

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