4 Important Chimney Repairs To Address
You’ve used your fireplace and chimney all winter, and they’ve performed well. Now it’s the off-season, and it’s time for you, the homeowner, to take a close look at your home heating appliance and make sure any needed repairs or maintenance are performed before another long winter.
Where your chimney is concerned, here are four common areas professional chimney sweeps often find that need attention.
The bricks and mortar that comprise the chimney can begin to show signs of wear after many seasons of intense fire-burning coupled with outside weather events. Crumbling brick is a situation that needs to be addressed. Same with small cracks in the structure.
When rainwater or water from melting snow is allowed to seep into the chimney’s masonry, you can bet more extensive – and expensive – damage is on the way. If the current damage is minor, “tuckpointing” may be the solution. This process involves using a specialized waterproofing spray to seal the cracks and eroded areas of the masonry. If more extensive damage exists, some rebuilding may be necessary.
Flashing repair or replacement
The flashing that skirts the chimney where it connects with the roof is a critical part of a fireplace system. Flashing keeps water and moisture from seeping down the exterior of the chimney and damaging adjacent building materials of the home as well as the chimney itself.
Over time, flashing may warp or become loose. These situations are both common, and they’re both something homeowners rarely notice. A professional chimney sweep may be able to fix the existing flashing; if not, new flashing can be properly installed.
Chimney crown inspection
The concrete crown that seals the top of the chimney can begin to crack, and the concern is the same as when any area of the chimney is compromised: water can run in and expand in freezing weather, exerting pressure and creating further damage.
Chimney crowns can be waterproofed in cases where cracks are minor and there’s no sign of more damage within the structure. They also can be professionally rebuilt.
Dampers eventually fall into disrepair and may need to be replaced. Soot and creosote buildup also can cause a damper to function inefficiently. In either case, an inspection by a trained chimney technician can determine the problem and fix it quickly.
If you haven’t had a professional chimney and fireplace inspection within the last year, you owe it to yourself to arrange for one this off-season before you’ll need to use your fireplace again on a regular basis. Northeastern Chimney serves the greater West Hartford, Connecticut, area with the best in chimney cleaning, inspection, maintenance and repair services. To schedule an appointment or get your questions answered, call (860) 233-5770.