I have no access to ash dump.
Hello, My home was built around 1965 with a brick fireplace that has an ash dump door on the floor of the fireplace. I would like to start using this, however it is filled almost to the top with ash. My issue is that I do not have any cleanout access door in the basement or outside. My neighbor's home was built at the same time by the same builder and is pretty much identical. He has a an ash dump with a cleanout door in the basement. When I look at the same wall in my basement it seems like the access door may have been removed and cemented over. A few questions for the forum: Why would the door have been removed in the past? Can a new cleanout door be installed? What issues might I encounter with the installation? Should I just have the ash vacuumed out from the top every few years? The chimney has a cap and water rarely drips down. Every so often after a heavy rainfall we get the ash smell coming from the fireplace. This happens even if the fireplace is clean. Could this smell be coming from the ash dump? Thank you all for your assistance.