Chimney Leaks Can Affect Your Home

If you are experiencing any type of water in or around your chimney appliance, please give us a call immediately! Leaks that are coming through the mortar or showing stains on the outside or inside of your chimney system can also be damaging to the ceilings and walls in the rooms adjacent to the fireplace or stove. Because of the way water travels, the leak across the room from the chimney or down the hall can be a symptom of water coming through the top of the flue or seeping into a cracked crown.

Don’t I Need A Roofer?

While you might think a roofing company is the first call you should make, in our experience, if it involves your chimney in any way, call a certified chimney company first. We can access the damage and find out the source, and in most cases, can fix the problem. We can repair or replace the flashing where the roof and chimney meet as well as the crown, chase, cap or damper. We can also look at the brick to make sure it has not broken down from excess water exposure. All things a roofing company won’t necessarily do.

Common Place A Leak Shows Itself:

  • If your walls are swollen or damp, then we investigate if there is leaking water running down the interior walls. The outside of your chimney is visually checked for cracks and/or deterioration as well as evidence of running water and the inside is checked with a video camera for these same indications.
  • Checking the mortar and flashing as well as the bricks is important  to discover if they are “spalled”, which is the flaking that can occur from water exposure.
  • The flashing that connects the chimney to the roof has to be installed properly to keep water out, so that is checked along with rusted-out flashing and splits that could be letting water into the system.
  • If the brick or mortar needs attention we can replace the spalled bricks as well as use tuck-pointing techniques to replace bad or worn mortar joints.
  • For masonry chimneys, a commercial-quality waterproofing seal and coating is available. This will expand the life of your chimney but will need to be redone every 4 to 5 years.

Hiring a professional chimney company is the only way to diagnose most chimney system water problems and correct it. The hardest part of water damage is to understand that much of it goes unseen until the damage becomes apparent. So to be safe, make sure you have an inspection done after high winds or dangerous storms come through. This is one way to protect your family before real damage is done to the appliance. So with that said, let’s talk about what you can do to:

Repairing the chimney flashing
Chimney flashing causing a water leak (top), and a newly sealed chimney flashing (bottom).

Prevent Potential Water Leaks To Your Chimney System

  • Maintain your system by getting it inspected and swept annually
  • Maintain and trim the trees around the chimney and outside of your home
  • Pick up dried leaves and keep your gutters cleaned out
  • During the annual inspection, make sure whoever evaluates your chimney system immediately inspects and repairs any flashing damage
  • Use a certified, reputable chimney repair and inspection company, one like The Mad Hatter, to complete the maintenance each year and do minor repairs before they become major ones

 

Leaks and other issues may mean your chimney needs  repair, so have it looked at before you have a really serious problem. Regular attention to your chimney and vent systems is the best way to ensure the safety of you and your family.