One of the most frequent questions we are asked at The Mad Hatter concerns the functions of a chimney cap. One of the most important components of your chimney system to make it function properly and safely, a chimney cap can protect the interior of your chimney from several different things. Even though there is no requirement by codes for your chimney to be capped, we strongly recommend your chimney be equipped with a correctly-fitted chimney cap. Economically, installing a chimney cap on top of your chimney makes sense because the cost of the cap and its installation is much less than what the costs of repairs needed due to the damage that can happen to an uncapped chimney. We would like to tell you more about the functions of chimney caps by sharing with you some information from EBSCO Research.
Prevent Water Penetration
If your area experiences a two-inch downpour of rain, those two inches of rain water will enter your chimney if you do not have a chimney cap. Chimney caps are one of the best preventions against water penetration of your chimney from rain and melted snow. Additionally, some models of chimney caps can also protect you from having wind issues, such as persistent drafts which cause frustration and loss of money on heating bills. If you are having trouble with drafts, The Mad Hatter can help you find a special wind-resistant cap.
Keep Out Animals
Not only do chimney caps prevent water from entering your chimney, but they also keep out any birds, squirrels, and raccoons that mistake your chimney for a hollow tree as a safe nesting spot. Animals and their nesting materials create some dangerous fire hazards, including chimney blockages which prevent toxic gases like carbon monoxide from exiting out through the chimney. When carbon monoxide is trapped inside your chimney, you run a risk of carbon monoxide poisoning as that toxic gas is typically forced back into your home. Another hazard presented by birds and animals in your chimney is the possibility of these creatures becoming trapped within your chimney. If this should occur, the bird or animal could panic and try to enter your living space, where significant and expensive damage can be caused. The trapped bird or animal could also die inside your chimney and create a horrific odor and a possible bug infestation. To best prevent animal invasions, The Mad Hatter recommends installing a chimney cap with mesh screening on the sides that is designed to keep out any birds or animals looking for a place to nest.
Stop Sparks From Exiting Your Chimney
As we have discussed the importance of a chimney cap keeping water, birds, and animals out of your chimney, we would also like to tell you how a chimney cap can keep hot sparks and embers inside your chimney. Without the spark arrestors on a chimney cap, sparks and embers can escape your chimney and land on your roof or your neighbor’s roof, which can possibly cause a house fire. These hot sparks and embers could also land in your yard on a bush or a pile of leaves and ignite a brush fire, which can quickly and easily become out of control. To keep these potentially dangerous situations from occurring, The Mad Hatter recommends choosing a chimney cap equipped with spark arrestors, or wire meshing, to keep the hot sparks and embers safely inside your chimney.
Want to know more about the functions of chimney caps? Get in touch with The Mad Hatter to talk to our chimney experts about purchasing the best chimney cap for your situation. Our certified technicians will custom install that cap to best protect the inside of your chimney and home.