Your chimney really takes a beating. While the rest of your house is protected by your roof, the chimney is constantly exposed to the elements which can cause it to deteriorate over time. If you don’t regularly maintain it, you could be faced with more than just a few repairs when problems arise!
If you’re experiencing issues with your chimney, calling in a CSIA certified chimney sweep to thoroughly inspect it is the first step in determining what exactly is needed. If there is significant damage to the structure of the chimney, you may be faced with rebuilding your chimney rather than repairing it.
How does a chimney get damaged & require a chimney rebuild?
Water is a major cause of chimney problems. Excessive moisture that finds its way inside bricks and repeatedly freezes and thaws causes a condition called spalling. The outer layer of the bricks breaks off, exposing the porous inner layer. Simply repairing the bricks won’t help the damage that has already been done and a rebuild may have to occur. Moisture doesn’t just damage the brick itself. Water coming through your chimney can cause the interior metal parts to rust, and can also seep into parts of your home such as your attic, ceilings, and walls. This is another instance where a rebuild may be the best course of action.
What is a chimney rebuild?
When a rebuild is recommended, keep in mind that there is more than one type:
- Partial chimney rebuild: for small chimneys (not requiring scaffolding) or the top of a large chimney including crown replacement.
- Roofline up chimney rebuild: this is when the chimney is torn down to the roofline and built back including a new crown.
- Total chimney rebuild: The entire outer layer of brick needs to be replaced in addition to the crown. In most instances, the firebox, hearth, and smoke chamber remain.
Note that in all three of these instances the crown has to be replaced.
The crown is an extremely important part of your chimney. When properly built it plays a big role in keeping your chimney protected. However many are not built out of the right materials and will not hold up well under harsh weather conditions. Properly replacing the crown helps minimize damage in the future. As well, after a chimney has been rebuilt, applying a waterproof sealant is a good preventative measure to help keep moisture out.
Remember, having your chimney inspected and maintained annually is the best method of keeping it in top shape as well as saving you money in the long run! Contact Us Today.