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Tips On How To Care For Your Chimney

Mar 19, 2008
When we consider the durability of a brick and concrete chimney, you usually think that they are created using these materials to last for many years, and they were. What many people may not realize is that most chimneys will be susceptible to all kinds of water damage. The chimney is normally the most exposed appendage on our house top. It is always sticking up there higher above any other things. During the years our brick chimneys are subjected to wind, rain, sleet, and humidity. Frequent freezing and thawing may cause brick work to decline fast because if the bricks get wet and they freeze, they will swell and this can cause their structure to be affected. Any of these weather related events will cause some deterioration, especially when good examinations and corrections are not done soon enough.

The chimney also has metal pieces like cast iron and steel too that might be damaged through time by exposure to water. The metal parts can rust and create more leaking and even more devastation. If the water leakage is too bad it can destroy any interior wood that it has over long contact with. Doing repairs like this can become very expensive before you know it.

There are several ways that masonry chimney water damage might be avoided. One way to achieve this is by installing a chimney cap when the chimney does not have one. Frequently older houses may not have one. Chimney caps can be fairly inexpensive and are not that complicated to install. A well made chimney cap can serve more purposes other than deterring water from getting into the flues. They can help keep sparks from floating up through the chimney and landing on your housetop and will discourage little animals and birds from putting their nest in your chimney.

The chimney crown seals and covers the top area of a chimney from the flue liners to the chimney edge. The chimney crown is probably made from the same mortar as the bricks masonry and is easily deteriorated due to years of subjection to the weather. If a chimney cap is damaged it will eventually allow water in. If a chimney crown is cracked, chipped, or flaking it needs to be replaced.

Replacement of compromised flashing can be easily redone. Flashing is a metal lining underneath the housetop shingles around the chimney and keeps water from coming in around this area. Lastly, waterproof the chimneys masonry. This is a quick chore and will prevent your water absorbent masonry from absorbing large amounts of water.
About the Author
Jim Corkern is a writer and promoter of quality
Miami Water Damage Restoration and
Chicago water damage restoration companies.
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