The pleasure and warmth a family gets out of a beautiful fireplace can be diminished if unexpected chimney repair costs cut into Christmas or college savings. Many people don’t realize that chimneys need to be inspected annually not just because it’s recommended for safety reasons but also because numerous problems can come up which are costly to repair. Our chimney technicians have the equipment to identify issues that may not readily be detected. The sooner you identify chimney problems, the less expensive they are to remedy. Preventative maintenance is even more cost effective, and the following are preventative maintenance measures that we highly recommend because they can save you a lot of money in the long run.
Install a Chimney Cap
Since moisture is a chimney’s worst enemy, anything that can keep moisture out is a very good thing. A chimney cap may be the least expensive accessory you can get for your chimney, but it does a world of good. The most obvious benefit of a chimney cap is that it will prevent rain from entering your chimney. Keeping rain out helps to prevent deterioration of masonry, the flue lining, and the firebox.
Chimney caps which include a screen or mesh netting prevent the problem of animals entering your chimney. Many expenses and frustrations could result from animals in the chimney, such as the removal and cleanup of a dead, decomposing critter which you’ll figure out is there once the horrendous smell permeates your home.
The most common materials used for chimney caps are aluminum, steel, and copper.
Waterproof the Chimney Flashing
Deterioration of the flashing is one of the most common causes of chimney leaks among our customers in Connecticut. It’s important that the flashing, which is the metal at the base of chimneys, is thoroughly waterproofed. Otherwise, the roof can leak around the chimney.
When we inspect your chimney, we take a close look at the flashing to ensure the waterproofing aspects of the structure are still sound. Caulking used around flashing is not an effective water repellent and should not be used. We have the materials and expertise to stop flashing leaks and deterioration.
Seal the Chimney Crown
Mortar crowns are at the top of masonry chimneys, and their purpose is to prevent moisture from getting into the house by entering between the chimney mortar and the flue lining. Normal cycles of expansion and contraction cause cracks to form in chimney crowns, over time. The best way to prevent cracks and stop existing cracks from growing larger is by sealing the crown with a crown sealer, which is a flexible elastomeric coating. Applying chimney crown sealer is smart preventative maintenance.
Seal the Masonry
Applying water repellent to your masonry chimney can help keep moisture out. The mortar is especially vulnerable, since it deteriorates much more quickly than the masonry materials. Every available means to keep moisture from entering the chimney system is recommended, to cut on the cost of needed repairs caused by moisture damage.
Contact our chimney professionals today and get a jump on costly chimney problems by investing in preventative maintenance.
Northeastern Chimney, Inc.
formerly Nayaug Chimney Services, LLC
37 Cody Street, West Hartford, CT 06110