In this blog entry, the Chicago chimney repair and chimney inspection service experts here at Chimney Sweep Near Me will detail the common causes of chimney issues.
Broken Chimney Caps
While a chimney cap is considered an accessory, it shouldn’t be overlooked, as it conducts an essential safety function. Chimney caps stop rain from pouring into your chimney which can cause a wide range of moisture issues. Chimney caps are installed at the top of chimney flues, and have a small metallic mesh that also prevents animals or debris from entering your chimney. The chimney cap will move water off and away from the flue opening, as well as deflecting wind with its shape. Without chimney caps, water will easily enter flues – and broken chimney caps can allow this to happen. Damage to chimney caps from wear, time, strong windows, or animals allow water to enter your chimney and damage the whole system.
Broken Chimney Flashing
Chimney flashing is made of multiple thin metal sheets which create a waterproof seal between a chimney and the roof. Flashing protects the sensitive area where the chimney mets the roof in order to protect from water damage. Flashing commonly experiences issues since it’s hard to install and is often improperly installed. Flashing also can easily get rust and leaks. The majority of chimney leaks is caused by damaged flashing – and this can be prevented only through regular chimney inspection.
Chimney Crown Issues
Chimney crowns, also known as mortar crowns, are cement surfaces at the top of the chimney. They specifically often slant 4 inches away from the flue, with a 2 inch overhang. Improper construction or installation of chimney crowns make them quickly experience damage much faster than well made or properly installed chimney crowns – and even these can crack from sun exposure and temperature changes. Cracks in chimney crowns allow in water that enters between flue lining and the chimney, causing damage to both chimneys and home structure itself.
Severe weather can rapidly cause chimney leaks even when chimney caps, chimney browns, and chimney flashing are in ideal condition. If masonry comes in contact with large amounts of water over time, it will eventually form a leak. We recommend applying a waterproof solution to your chimney exterior.