When you look at your chimney from outside of your home, you may not see anything wrong. Most homeowners don’t really see anything other than their lovely chimney. Some venture onto the roof and look closer and see nothing major. Perhaps a few cracks in the brick, a dent in the crown, or some mortar that seems to be missing.
That all doesn’t seem to be a huge issue, but it’s those little warning signs that actually tell us that something is awry. When these elements are seen, it’s time to take care of repair. It’s easy to overlook potentially leaky chimney parts, but is’ imperative to not dismiss small things that could be bigger than meets the eye. Consider some of the issues that you may see, and need help with…
Mortar: First and foremost, the mortar that holds masonry together can erode. Mother Nature doesn’t discriminate when it comes to this. When this starts to break down and erode due to the elements, the bricks that were once straight and strengthened by the bond start to slip. Think of it like your spinal column in a way.
When you herniate a disc, your spinal column starts to go out of alignment and back pain comes through. The same can be said about mortar that starts to erode as the weight of your bricks can start to impede on others and cause a break down.
Flashing: The flashing that you have in place is important. It helps take water away from the chimney by offering a protective barrier. This is usually made of sheet metal, and placed firmly between the chimney’s masonry and the roofing that you have. It’s tucked away and then shingled over to ensure that there’s a 100% waterproof barrier in place.
This allows rain to hit your roof, and fall away without issue. This too can erode, rust, and eventually deteriorate with the elements that are in place. You don’t want to overlook this. Just a small crack or space between these could cause water droplets to come into your home, which ends up damaging the structure of your home or your drywall.
Cap and Crown: These two pieces are important to the structure of your chimney. They help keep rain out, and allow you to have another measure of safety when you burn a log. This is a good thing to have in place, but again, the weather could cause a great deal of turmoil.
You don’t want to have rain, sleet, snow, or the sun causing too much damage here. It doesn’t happen overnight, so you don’t need to worry too much. However, when there’s an issue here, you could have water coming into your fireplace, and a flood could occur. Or minor issues could start to build up, causing issues down the line.
Getting these components fixed isn’t going to cost you an arm and a leg. As long as you have keep up the maintenance, and have annual inspections, cleanings, and don’t neglect your fireplace, you won’t have to worry too much about these potential leak points. It’s when you ignore your chimney that you end up with issues.