Common Chimney Problems & How To Fix Them

Common Chimney Problems & How To Fix Them

Common Chimney Problems & How To Fix Them

A functioning chimney is a staple piece of a cozy home during the winter, making it an essential part of your property. Unfortunately, your chimney may occasionally develop some issues along the way, with immediate repairs making it possible to get your home ready for the holidays. So what are some common chimney problems, and how do you fix them?

Cracked Crown

The crown will be a crucial part of your chimney, with any damage leading to exposure of the internal areas of your chimney. It covers the chimney’s top and is often made from materials such as concrete or metal. If elements such as snow, rain, or debris create constant pressure on the crown, it may crack, allowing moisture to get to other areas of the chimney. Mold may also develop, weakening its structural integrity.

Rectifying this calls for a replacement, reseal, or resurfacing of the crown. The mode of correction will depend on the extent of the damage. Resealing will be the first step where damage is in its early stages, with replacement called for where the crack is deep or where some parts of the crown are missing. Chimney maintenance will also come in handy, with early signs of cracking fixed immediately after they occur.

Two Masonry Chimney's during Chimney Restoration of Kanas City's Chimney Repair Service in Kansas City

Creosote Build-Up

Creosote is a mixture of chemicals created when smoke condenses, causing a dark brown tar-like substance. While one or two burns do not warrant any cause of concern, creosote build-up over time could be hazardous, as it is highly flammable. If you spot soot-like build-up in your chimney, make it a point to call in chimney experts to help inspect it.

The remedy to this will be having your chimney professionally cleaned annually, with chimney inspections also coming in handy. Additionally, professionals can help maintain your fireplace, allowing you to reduce creosote build-up in the long run.

Constricted Flue

The flue in your chimney lets the smoke escape safely outside, with any damage and constriction forcing the smoke back into your home. If, for instance, your chimney was poorly built or experienced mortar build-up during construction, constriction will likely occur. If soot debris accumulates at the bend in the flue, smoke could also get back into your home.

The remedy for this will be clearing the blockage in the flue. If this does not work, your chimney experts could open the flue for a thorough cleanup.

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Brickwork Problems

While bricks are durable and often withstand extreme conditions, they will occasionally experience damage due to exposure to moisture. When this happens, your bricks will freeze and expand over time, causing a weaker structure. This could result in the chimney collapsing, making it unusable.

The solution to this problem will be getting repairs done on your brickwork by masonry experts. This will be through replacing damaged bricks with new ones reinforced by more robust materials such as mortar. Depending on the damage, your technician can recommend a complete or partial rebuild.

Chimney Blockage

You likely have chimney blockage if you notice smoke coming back into your home. This could be caused by debris and leaves obstructing your chimney. Like creosote build-up, this blockage is also hazardous, with the smoke redirecting carbon monoxide and other fumes into your home.

Fixing this will require hiring professionals to remove the debris causing the blockage. They can also install a cap to prevent unwanted substances from getting into the draft, creating a safe environment for you and your loved ones.

Cracked Flashing

The flashing is responsible for preventing runoff from ice and snow from getting into your attic and ceiling, preventing any water pooling and mold incidences. If the flashing is not installed correctly or is old, it could crack, giving way to the weather elements that weaken the structure of your chimney.

Repairing the flashing or replacing it will be your go-to when this happens. If the flashing shows any signs of rusting, it will need to be replaced. If, on the other hand, it has started pulling away from the chimney, it will need to be repaired, minimizing your maintenance needs.

Evaluating a masonry chimney with loose bricks

Large Fireplace Opening

A large fireplace opening leads to smokiness in the home, creating a health hazard. This problem could come from a significant opening in relation to the flue. The remedy will be replacing the insert fire with a room heater. Alternatively, the flue size could be altered or the fireplace opening reduced.

If your chimney has any of the above problems, consider reaching out to Chimney Restoration of Kansas City. Our experts can help inspect, repair, and replace any damage to your chimney flue, crown, and flashing. If you are also struggling with blockage and reside within Jackson County, MO, reach out to us today to help clear your chimney for the guaranteed health and safety of your loved ones.

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