Chimney Repairs in Lawrence, KS: Common Causes and Repairs

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A chimney adds to the aesthetic appeal of your home’s interior and exterior, but it’s so much more than a decorative accent; a chimney is a vital component of your fireplace. It’s this structure that allows the excess heat, smoke, carbon monoxide, and other waste products of combustion to exhaust out of your Douglas County home, and it feeds fires with the oxygen they need to burn. Needless to say, a chimney is pretty important. Like any other part of your house, however, a chimney can become damaged, and when it does, it needs to be repaired ASAP.

Why are chimney repairs so important? Well, because using a fireplace when the chimney is damaged can increase the risk of a host of problems, including house fires and carbon monoxide poisoning, and if the damage is severe enough, the structural integrity of a chimney could become compromised. On top of these issues, fires won’t burn as efficiently – if at all – when the chimney is damaged. But if you’re a novice, or you’re new to chimney repairs, there’s no doubt you have some questions; specifically, what causes them and the most common types of chimney repairs that are needed.

Below, you’ll find an overview of both the factors that can contribute to and what the most common causes of chimney repairs in Lawrence, KS are.

Common Causes of Chimney Damage in Lawrence, KS

There are several factors that can contribute to chimney damage, and the following issues seem to be the most prevalent among Douglas County property owners.

Moisture

Of all the factors that contribute to chimney repairs in Lawrence, KS, moisture is the most prevalent. Moisture and masonry materials do not mix. That’s because masonry materials, such as brisk, stone, concrete, and mortar are porous, which means they readily absorb water. When water penetration occurs, especially in Douglas County’s frigid winters, it quickly freezes, which causes the masonry materials to expand and crack. As the freezing and thawing continue, the cracks will only get bigger, allowing more water to get in. The process repeats, and eventually, you can have severe damage on your hands. In fact, moisture damage can be so severe that it can weaken a chimney’s structural integrity, and eventually, it could collapse.

Neglect

Years of neglect – especially when the structure is used on a regular basis, but even if it’s only used on occasion – can cause serious problems that necessitate extensive, costly repairs. Creosote buildup – a highly flammable byproduct of combustion – along with soot, ash, and constant exposure to extreme temperatures, as well as the elements, and even critters and outdoor debris; chimneys can take a serious beating. It’s for these reasons that regular maintenance is vital for a healthy, safe, and properly functioning chimney; however, despite this fact, many Douglas County homeowners fail to maintain adequately maintain their chimneys and fireplaces.

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Acts of Nature

Well-constructed chimneys are generally sturdy and can easily withstand Kansas weather; however, weather-related events can and do contribute to damages that necessitate chimney repairs in Kansas. Heavy snow and rain, extreme winds, and even lightning strikes and earthquakes can significantly weaken a chimney and destabilize the entire structure.

Common Chimney Repairs in Lawrence, KS

As you can see, chimneys can be damaged in a number of ways; fortunately, however, a reputable Lawrence, KS chimney repair specialist can repair all of these damages, as long as they are addressed soon enough. You see, the longer the damage goes unaddressed, the worse it will become, and eventually, it can become so severe that the structural integrity of an affected chimney can become compromised. That said, the key to preventing more widespread damage is contacting an experienced professional as soon as possible.

The following are some of the most common types of chimney repairs Lawrence, KS homeowners require.

Crown Repairs

A chimney crown is made of concrete, a porous material that rapidly absorbs water. Chimney crowns can crack as a result of ground settling, regular use, constant exposure to the elements, and poor construction. Experienced Lawrence, KS chimney repair professionals can perform durable, long-lasting crown repairs to correct the problem.

Chimney Cap Installation

A chimney cap is a protective covering that sits over the top of a chimney. Typically comprised of metal mesh materials, such as copper, a cap prevents rainwaters, snow, animals, leaves, twigs, and other exterior debris from falling into the chimney. High winds, tree limbs, and poor installation are just some of the reasons why this protective barrier can become loose and fall off, but a reputable Lawrence, KS chimney repair specialist will be able to install a new one.

Masonry Repairs

As discussed, masonry materials are highly porous, and thus, they absorb water very quickly. As the moisture freezes and thaws, the masonry materials expand and contract, forming cracks. If this problem is addressed, it will only worsen, and eventually, the entire structure could collapse. Professional contractors that specialize in chimney repairs in Lawrence, KS will have the knowledge and skill that are needed to repair masonry damage.

Contact Douglas County’s Chimney Repair Experts

No matter the type or the cause, when you’re in need of chimney repairs in Lawrence, KS, there’s only one company to call: Chimney Restoration of Kansas City. Our team of professionally trained CSIA Specialist Certified experts are highly skilled and will provide durable results that will last for years to come. For more information or to schedule a free consultation, call 913-374-7902 today!

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Lawrence is a city in and the county seat of Douglas County, Kansas, United States, and the sixth-largest city in the state. It is in the northeastern sector of the state, astride Interstate 70, between the Kansas and Wakarusa Rivers. As of the 2020 census, the population of the city was 94,934. Lawrence is a college town and the home to both the University of Kansas and Haskell Indian Nations University.

The Kaw people, also known as the Kansa, settled the region including what is now Lawrence in the late 17th or early 18th century. A series of treaties with the U.S. government compelled the Kaw to relinquish the land to the Shawnee and their Indian Reservation, established in 1830. The Kansas Territory was established in May 1854. During this period, the Oregon Trail ran parallel to the Kansas River, roughly through the area where Lawrence is now. A hill in the area, then known as Hogback Ridge and now known as Mount Oread, which sits on the separating the Kansas and Wakarusa River, was used as a landmark and outlook by those on the trail. While the territory was technically closed to settlement until 1854, there were a few “squatter settlements” in the area, especially just north of the Kansas River.

Lawrence was founded “strictly for political reasons” having to do with slavery, which was heavily debated in the United States in the early to mid-1800s. Northern Democrats, led by Senators Lewis Cass of Michigan and Stephen A. Douglas of Illinois, promoted “popular sovereignty” as a middle position on the slavery issue. Its proponents argued it was more democratic, as it allowed the citizens of newly organized territories (and not Washington, D.C. politicians) to have a direct say as to the legality of slavery in their own lands. (Meanwhile, enemies of the bill, especially in the north, derisively called this idea “squatter sovereignty”.) Douglas eventually made popular sovereignty the backbone of his Kansas-Nebraska Act-legislation that effectively repealed the Missouri Compromise of 1820 and created the territories of Kansas and Nebraska-which passed Congress in 1854.

The Christian abolitionist and Protestant minister Richard Cordley later noted that after the bill became law, “there was a feeling of despondency all over the north” because its passage “opened Kansas to [the possibility of] slavery [which many] thought [was] equivalent to making Kansas a slave state”. This was largely because nearby Missouri allowed slavery, and many rightly assumed the first settlers in Kansas Territory would come from Missouri, bringing their penchant for slavery with them.

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