Your Guide to Taking the CSIA Exam

Ready to boost your professionalism and confidence by becoming one of the best? It all starts with earning your CSIA Certification by passing your exam. Whether you’re on your way to becoming a Certified Dryer Exhaust Technician® or a Certified Chimney Sweep® here’s what you need to know to pass the exam.

What You’ll Need

First things first, you’ll want to order your reference materials.

Chimney Safety Institute of America Certified Chimney Sweep Logo

If you are taking the Certified Chimney Sweep® exam, you’ll need:

  • Chimney & Venting Essentials (1st Edition – 2019)
  • International Residential Code (IRC) (2021 Edition)
  • NFPA 211 (2019 Edition)
Chimney Safety Institute of America Certified Dryer Exhaust Technician Logo

If you are taking the C-DET® exam, you’ll need:

  • Certified Dryer Exhaust Technicians Manual (2020 Edition)

You can order your reference materials a la carte or as a bundle right here on our website.

For both certifications, you will also need to reference the Chimney Fire: Causes, Effects & Evaluation white paper, which you’ll find right here on our website

Scheduling Your Review

Next, you’ll need to order your Online or In-Person Review.

In-Person Reviews are held frequently throughout the country and at the CSIA Technology Center in Indiana. Private companies may also sponsor a review and exam event at their location.

Online Reviews can be purchased right here on our website, but if you’re enrolled in eLearning, you’ll already have access to the C-DET and CCS Online Reviews. If you aren’t, you can always purchase each a la carte at the links below:

Each features lessons and quizzes to make sure you’re ready for the exam. These can be completed on your own schedule – and don’t worry, you have one month to complete the Online Review once you purchase it.

Note: The Review is not a substitute for intense study of the material.

You Don’t Have to Do It All on Your Own

Maybe hitting the books isn’t the way you learn best. Well, while the manuals are required for earning your credential, there are other ways of getting the information as well.

  • For C-DET certification, we offer a two-day C-DET workshop with hands-on training. At the end of the workshop, you’ll take the exam and earn your credential. Find out more right here.
  • For CCS certification, consider signing up for the CSIA National Training Academy, a six-day hands-on and classroom training that includes manuals, exams, and expert instruction. If you want to knock it all out at once, this is the option for you.
  • We also offer in-person CCS and C-DET Reviews throughout the year at various locations, including the CSIA Tech Center here in Indiana. If sitting at a computer isn’t your thing, an in-person review can really help you prepare for the exam. Find out when and where the next in-person CCS and C-DET Reviews are being held right here.

Where to Take the Test

Alright, you’re ready to pass your exam and earn your certification. Where and when can you take the test?

  • If you signed up for the two-day C-DET workshop or the six-day CSIA National Training Academy training, the exam will be administered on the final day of the workshop.
  • If you signed up for an in-person one-day review session, the exam will be offered immediately after the review session has ended. You’ll just need to register for the exam.
  • If you are not attending any of the above, you can register for a proctored exam using our online proctoring service, ProctorFree, or a local testing center.

How to Register for a ProctorFree Exam

ProctorFree monitors you through your own computer, so you no longer have to deal with the hassle of going to a local proctor. Your entire team can take their exams from the comfort of the office or at home – all they need is a computer with a webcam.

Here’s what you need to know about the process:

  • Start by ordering your exam right here. Indicate on your order that you will be taking your exam with ProctorFree. If you are taking the exam with ProctorFree, you do not need to set up your exam with them ahead of time. Just order your exam from CSIA and we’ll get you all set up. Please note that you must order your exam at least three business days before your desired exam date.
  • Once everything is processed, we will send you an email with your ProctorFree login info and instructions on how to create your account. Make sure your computer has a webcam. This is how ProctorFree monitors you during the exam.
  • When you are ready to begin your exam on your scheduled day, log into ProctorFree, create your account, and pay their proctoring fee. Their fee is $15 per exam.
  • Begin your exam! Once you’ve completed your exam, your results will be shown automatically. Get the champagne ready!

If you have any issues or want tips before you get started, please visit ProctorFree’s knowledge base and tech support page right here.

How to Arrange an Exam With a Proctor

We have a list of accepted proctors to make taking your exam easier and less stressful. These include:

To arrange your exam with a proctor, simply contact that proctor to set up the date and time of your exam.

  • For the Certified Chimney Sweep® exam, you’ll need a 2.5-hour session.
  • For the Certified Dryer Exhaust Technician® exam, you’ll need a 30-minute session.

Once you set up the exam with your proctor, order your exam with CSIA.

When ordering your exam, please select the “event” that corresponds to the month in which you are taking the exam. For example, if you are taking the exam on September 17th, please select the September 1 option.

CSIA must have a minimum of three business days advance notice to order your online exam.

Here’s what we’ll need:

  • Your information
  • The proctor’s information
  • The date and time of your scheduled exam
  • Your exam payment

Once you order your exam, electronic exams will be emailed to your proctor and a login to your exam will be emailed to you prior to the exam date and time. (If you haven’t received an email from us by the day prior to your exam, be sure to check your spam or junk folder and give us a call.)

When you finish your exam, your score will appear right away, so you can start celebrating without the wait.

 Note: The proctor may set their own rate for testing fees.

What’s the Test Like?

The C-DET® exam is a 50-question exam that tests the participant’s knowledge of the CSIA-Certified Dryer Exhaust Technician® manual.

The Certified Chimney Sweep® exam is a two-part exam*:

  • A one-hour, 100-question closed-book exam based on the Chimney & Venting Essentials manual and the NFPA 211.
  • A 90-minute open-book exam on the International Residential Code (IRC). Candidates must use their own copy of the IRC (print or PDF) in order to complete the exam.

*Both portions of the CCS exam must be taken during the same testing appointment.

Last, But Not Least, Get to Know the Code of Ethics

It’s not just a wealth of knowledge that sets CSIA certified pros apart from the rest, it’s also their commitment to do their work ethically, honestly, and to the best of their ability. That’s why every one of our certified pros must sign and agree to abide by our Code of Ethics prior to certification.

Prior to your exam, read them over and familiarize yourself with the CSIA-Certified Sweep® and C-DET® way of doing things. You’ll be required to sign the Code of Ethics at the time of the exam.

We’re Here for You, Every Step of the Way

You’re all set! If you have any questions along the way to certification or there’s anything we can help with, just let us know. You can call us at 317-837-5362 or reach out to We’re here to help!


Part of keeping up with your certification and renewals is getting the necessary CEUs in a timely manner…check that out here.