LEAKY CHIMNEY OR ROOF
Let's address those pesky water issues.
The masonry materials that make up your chimney are porous by nature. Unfortunately, this porous quality also allows rainwater to enter into the brick where it can freeze and thaw with temperature changes, causing the brick to decay from the inside out.
In the past, many homeowners applied paint to their chimneys in hopes to "seal it" from the rain. But, applying paint to a chimney structure does not actually fix the issue. Why? Because it essentially removes the porous quality of the brick and traps moisture, causing further deterioration inside of the chimney. So what can you do? Call Top Hat Chimney Sweeps! We use a waterproofing product that is specially formulated to keep rainwater out of the chimney system without trapping moisture and gas inside of the chimney system.
TELL ME MORE ABOUT THIS WATERPROOFING PRODUCT.
ChimneySaver is the perfect water repellent because it’s 100% vapor-permeable. There are two types of ChimneySaver water repellent:
Water-based – Used when the chimney has not ever been treated with another water repellent
Solvent-based – Used when the chimney has been treated with another product or ChimneySaver is reapplied after 10 years
Both products provide the same great protection and the same benefits, including:
Carries a 10-year warranty
Imperceptible (won’t alter the appearance of your brick)
Protects brick & prevents stains
When you have this amazing product applied to your chimney, you’ll enjoy water protection without sacrificing the safety and integrity of the chimney system or your ecosystem.
FOUR EXAMPLES THAT MASONRY AND WATER DO NOT MIX WELL.
CRACKS, GAPS &
The portion where your chimney exits your roof is often one of the weakest areas with regards to water penetration. Flashing is a series of metal strips that are installed in layers to seal the seam between that of your chimney and roof. These strips are conmmonly constructed of stainless steel, aluminum, copper or some other type of metal and when properly installed and cared for, do an excellent job of protecting you from water penetration.
INSTALLED PROPERLY IS THE KEY
Unfortunately, not all flashing jobs are done well. Here is why it’s important to have a certified professional do the work:
If the flashing has any bends or divots in it upon installation, water can settle in these spaces and eat away at the metal over time. Our certified technicians have decades of experience properly installing flashing, so you can be confident your home is protected for years to come.
If the flashing has any gaps or rises in it, water can get in and make its way down into the home. Moreover, these gaps can also give insects and animals a way into the home.
Lastly, a good flashing job should not negatively affect the appearance of your home. With Top Hat Chimney Sweeps, you can expect both not only expert protection, but also a product that is going to look great on your home!
WHEN SHOULD I HAVE MY FLASHING INSPECTED?
Aside from installation flaws, flashing can fail when:
strong storms dent, bend or lift it
animals tamper with it
house settling causes a separation
rain rusts or corrodes it
All of these things can happen suddenly or over time, which is why it’s important to have your flashing examined annually and also after any major weather event.
Crickets are a special type of structure designed to divert water (that would otherwise gather at the chimney base) around the chimney and off of the roof.
DO I NEED A CRICKET?
Industry standards require a cricket on all chimneys wider than 30¨ where the roof slopes down towards the chimney. However, chimneys with much smaller widths could certainly warrant a cricket dependent upon the slope of the roof, chase construction material, and the regularity of debris build-up (i.e. leaves, sticks, etc.). Crickets are extremely important for the wellbeing of your chimney structure. Without a properly constructed cricket, the roofing directing behind your structure proves to be a direct route for rain-water penetration. In addition to water penetration issues, non-cricketed chimneys can collect debris that saturate the roofline and cause major water damage (i.e. flashing rust-out, roof rot, etc.).
WATER + CHIMNEY = NO BUENO
Your chimney system is exposed to the elements day after day, and if your chimney is not properly protected and inspected regularly, you could notice some or all of the following water-related damages:
Rust, corrosion and holes riddling the metal components of your chimney system, like your flue liner, firebox, or damper
Gaps, cracks, holes, decay and crumbling brick and mortar
Color variations within brick, including darkening and white patches (efflorescence)
Mold and vegetation growth in and on your masonry
Rust stains on the siding of your home and chase
Water-stained ceilings and walls
Musty, dank odor within your home
Siding, just like masonry, has its own contentions with rain water. Yet, unlike masonry, siding oftens masks the prevailing issues rather than exposing them. That is, though siding will eventually show signs of water damage as it wraps or discolors, it often conceals the ensuing issues leaving you with far more damage than initially expected. This is precisely why it is imperative to have one of our certified technicians inspect your siding chimney system on a periodical basis.
The siding on your home is your home’s first defense against the elements. We recommend not only your chimney, but the entirety of your home be sided with a weather-resistant siding and trim. Designed to resist warping, rotting, rusting, staining and other water and weather-related damage, the weather-resistant siding we install will keep your home looking great for years to come. Additionally, it is sure to save you money down the stretch with its water protectant and non-fade properties.
Prefabricated or manufactured chimney systems utilize water-protection devices just like masonry chimney systems, one of which is a chase pan. The chase pan rests on top of the chase, which is the decorative and protective covering that surrounds the metal flue of the manufactured chimney pipe. In essence, a chase pan is the prefabricated chimney’s version of a crown. They are constructed of metal and are intended to protect the chimney system and your home from water penetration, as well as, defend against animals and insects attempting to enter the home.
Unfortunately, water can do a number on your chase pan. Some common problems with a chase pan include:
If your chase cover is too flat, water can pool on the top causing it to rust and eventually form holes, which enables water to penetrate directly into your chimney system
If your chase pan is allowing water to flow directly into the chimney system this will certainly lower efficiency, raise risk of a chimney fire, and cause further damage and rust to the internals of your system.
Lastly, if your chase pan is not coupled with a chimney cap, the flue of your chimney system is directly exposed to the elements, causing a variety of potential issues.
UPDATE YOUR PAN
If you are experiencing rust stains on the chase from your chase pan or simply want to update the look of your home give us a call today! We commonly recommend stainless steel or some other non-corrosion metal for chase pans. This ensures your chase is not only protected from the elements, but that your home will look beautiful for years to come!
When it comes to keeping water out of your chimney system, your crown or chase pan does a good portion of the work, yet there is commonly one further component, the chimney cap. The installation of a new chimney cap is the single best improvement to your chimney to prevent water entry.
Chimney caps are designed to fit snugly onto flue liners or chimneys extending beyond the crown or chase pan. Their purpose of course is to keep out rain, wind, insects, animals, debris and other elements. Whether you have a single or a multi-flue system, there is a cap that will work for you.
ARE THERE DIFFERENT OPTIONS?
Of course! In fact, dependent upon your system you may have an abundance of options and looks possible for your chimney cap. We often recommend a full-coverage stainless steel chimney cap. These caps function as both a chimney cap and a chase pan all-in-one, and serve your chimney best in regards to water intrusion prevention. See below for some potential options for your home!
Multi-flue stainless steel chimney caps
Copper full-coverage chimney cap with drip edge
Full-coverage stainless steel chimney cap with drip edge
Powder-coated brown full-coverage chimney cap with drip edge