3 Reasons Why Chimney Balloons Are Useless

Fireplaces provides warmth and a comforting ambiance during the colder months… but

On normal days, other than giving your living room a rustic vibe, unused chimneys are gigantic holes that remove conditioned air from your home and let in the outside air in a very uncontrolled manner.

This is why draught-proofing a chimney is imperative in ensuring that your indoor heating sits at a comfortable level. If sealing an unused chimney is not a new concept to you anymore, then you’ve probably used Chimney Balloons for this purpose.

Because they were free and widely available as part of a government program, there are many thousands of Chimney Balloons installed in Victoria.  They were the go-to solution for the majority of homeowners who want to stop their chimneys from affecting their thermal comfort without structural change.  The plastic Chimney Balloons can be blown up manually and are inserted into the throat of the chimney.

However, while they were easy to use, these widely-used inflatables don’t actually perform well in preventing air leaks and helping you maximise your home heating and cooling!

Here are three main reasons why Chimney Balloons are not the best solution for draught-proofing your Chimneys:

1. Chimney Balloons Don’t Fit Snugly Into The Chimney Throat

Chimney throats are commonly rectangular in shape, with corners each measuring 90 degrees. Meanwhile, Chimney Balloons are round and therefore will not fit snugly into the throat. There are always going to be gaps for air leakage to continue to steal your expensive heating and cooling.

2. They Don’t Last Long

Chimney Balloons can deflate over time and can be prone to puncturing. Re-inflating them every three months can become tiresome and even messy.  Unless you don’t mind getting in your hands and knees to re-inflate or re-install your balloon every 12 weeks, we recommend that you get a Chimney Draught Stopper.

3. They tend to Fall Into the Heath

A slightly deflated Chimney Balloon will lose sufficient tightness to fall. This means the balloon will fall into the hearth. On countless occasions, we’ve seen hapless Chimney Balloons sitting in the hearth. Worse, we have even found one outside in the garden having escaped via the chimney!

4. Chimney Balloons are made from Plastic!

OK – we could not help ourselves… here is a fourth reasons… And isn’t there enough plastic in the world already?   It is better to seek alternative materials that don’t harm the earth. If you desire a longer-lasting solution to stop draughts, pest infestation, and water leaks in your fireplace, a Chimney Draught Stopper is what you need.

What Is A Chimney Draught Stopper?

Draught-proofing your chimney is best done by installing a Chimney Draught Stopper into your fireplace.  

It is a medium density foam that has been pre-cut to the general size of chimneys.  Measuring 1000mm long x 300mm wide and 100mm thick, a Chimney Draught Stopper is easily trimmed to shape and be inserted into the throat of your chimney.

Watch this video to see how to achieve an excellent result into stopping your open chimney.

Chimney Draught Stoppers have a number of excellent qualities including not being impacted by water. 

If you wish to remove the plug, it can be easily extracted.  We suggest you attach a string around the plug if you wish to remove it on a regular basis. It is also a useful idea to include a reminder in the hearth that you have a plug inserted into the chimney – just in case you forget.


Carbon monoxide is emitted when gas is burnt.  
Carbon monoxide is odourless, invisible, tasteless … and deadly.

People Also Ask:


⇒ What are the benefits of a Chimney Draught Stopper over alternatives?

Chimney draught stoppers are: 

  1. Reusable – Chimney draught stoppers are designed to be reusable and can be used multiple times with minimal wear. This is in contrast to other products like foam fillers that need to be replaced regularly.
  2. Easy Installation – Installation of chimney draught stoppers is often less difficult than installing other types of draft-prevention products such as foam fillers or rubber seals.
  3. Inexpensive – Chimney draught stoppers are among the least expensive draft-prevention products on the market, providing an effective solution without breaking the bank.
  4. Remain in Place – unlike chimney balloons, Chimney Draught Stoppers will not fall out or deflate. 
  5. No odour – if there is an amount of rain that comes down the flue, a  Chimney Draught Stopper will not smell musty, will not go mouldy and will not smell like a wet sheep in your lounge room!

How does a chimney draught stopper work?

A Chimney Draught Stopper is an Australian product manufactured by ecoMaster that is designed to be installed in the flue of a chimney to prevent cold air from entering the house and warm air from exiting. 

The Chimney Draught Stopper works by creating an airtight seal and blocking the flow between the interior and exterior of the structure, reducing draughts and improving energy efficiency.  The Chimney Draught Stopper will also stop birds, insects, dust and pollen from entering your home. 

What types of chimney draught stopper are available?

There is one type of Chimney Draught Stopper available.  It is 1000mm long, 10mm thick and 30mm wide.  The Chimney Draught Stopper is suitable for the majority of Australian chimneys.  If your chimney is wider or longer than this, you can purchase two Chimney Draught Stoppers and glue them together with spray-on upholstery adhesive. 

Where can I buy a chimney draught stopper?

You can buy a Chimney Draught Stopper from the ecoMasterStore.com.au which hosts a curated range of draught stoppers, roof insulation, wall insulation, underfloor insulation, secondary glazing and shading options that support Australian homeowners to retrofit their homes to become more energy efficient.   ecoMaster has installed products in people’s homes for over 20 years.  They have done the research so you don’t have to. 

How often should I replace my chimney draught stopper?

Your Chimney Draught Stopper has a warranty of 5 years.  However, they have been used since 2004 without a single complaint or replacement. 


There are so many products in Draught Proofing – where do I look?  

Draught proofing or Draught Stopping is a complex area that requires knowledge in 3 areas: 

  1. Where to find draughts
  2. Which product to use 
  3. How to install the product successfully

ecoMaster has created an ecoMasterClass to help you navigate this area.  Here is the link to the Draught Proofing Masterclass.  


What’s Next?

We hope this article has helped you learn how to use simple ways to save on your utility bill. This in turn will help you on your energy and thermal efficiency retrofit journey to make your home more comfortable all year round, and reduce your costs and carbon emissions.   

Next, explore How to fill large gaps in hardwood floors.

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Check your chimney


Check the status and positioning of your chimney balloon and consider replacing it with a much more effective Chimeny Draught Stopper.

Available on ecoMaster Store