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Homestead Chimney Service Blog

Creosotes & Other Chimney Problems

Better safe than sorry could be considered a correct phrase to use when referring to your chimney.  It is important that you have your annual maintenance done on your chimney on time and by someone who knows what they are doing.  This is usually a sweep and basic inspection, and should be done by a professional technician that is certified by the Chimney Safety Institute of America.  At the beginning of every season is when you should schedule, not just when you feel that something may be going wrong.  However, if you do feel that there is a problem you should call someone immediately to prevent harm toward, you, your family, or your home.  Homestead Chimney has a group of experienced professionals ready to help with any repairs of questions you may have.

It is much easier and less expensive to intervene early when your chimney shows signs of wear and tear.

It is much easier and less expensive to intervene early when your chimney shows signs of wear and tear.

Creosotes are a number one problem when causing malfunctions in chimneys.  Creosotes are formed when byproducts of burnt wood builds up on the side of the firebox area, and could eventually cause blockages that could lead to fire.  Also, if they are to build up on a throat damper it could prevent the metal plate from opening and closing correctly.  However, your annual sweep can prevent this problem.  Animals can also cause damage to the chimney when they bring in different types of material to bring nests, which could block the airflow.

Moisture can also harm the chimney as well.  It can be brought in off twigs and animals, but more commonly the weather.  When rain or melted snow gets inside of the structure it can rust the inside of the chimney.  If temperatures get low enough the water can freeze and thaw, overtime cracking the mortar.  If the water gets in an existing crack, it can mold and spread to the other parts of the home.  If you install a chimney cap it can work against letting the water in.  Settlement is another common issue and can cause a crack in the flue system, which means that carbon monoxide or smoke can get into the home and your air supply.  It is important to have any flue issue resolved immediately for the health of everyone in your home.

Call us today and lets get started improving the performance of your system.

Common Chimney Repairs

These Things Happen

Many people do not give any thought to chimney repairs until it becomes clear that there is something wrong. If the chimney is starting to smell strange or is producing a great deal of smoke, it may be time to hire a certified chimney professional to investigate. A chimney specialist is a critical piece, because their training and experience give them the ability to see problems, or potential problems that you don’t notice or cannot interpret.

So you know you need to call a chimney professional, how often does your chimney need an inspection?  This should be done on an annual basis, not just when there seems to be a problem. In fact, having the chimney inspected each year is the best way to avoid most common chimney problems before they become major issues. This can save you money and prevent any damage to the structure of your home.

Annual inspections are critical for safety reasons, but also so that an expert pair of eyes can identify small problems before they become big and expensive.

Annual inspections are critical for safety reasons, but also so that an expert pair of eyes can identify small problems before they become big and expensive.

Replacing or relining the flue liner is a common repair. The liner protects the inside of the chimney from corrosive gas, chemicals and general wear and tear on the flue. In many cases, chimney specialists find that the liner has started to detach from the flue, making it ineffective. Older homes may not have a flue liner at all and, if this is the case, the chimney should not be used until one is properly installed.

A great deal of chimney damage is caused by excessive amounts of moisture that collect within the flue. This may be the result of rain or snow that makes its way into the chimney and collects there. A simple way to fix this problem is by having a chimney cap installed. This little piece fits right over the top of the chimney and prevents unwanted material from getting inside. This can prevent damage such as deteriorating bricks, dangerous molds or damage from critters setting up a home in your chimney.

Sometimes, a chimney inspection will show that there are cracks inside of the chimney as a result of foundation settlement. This is a serious issue that a homeowner would not likely know about if they did not have a proper inspection. In this case, it may be necessary to have the entire chimney refurbished or replaced. This may seem like a major undertaking but, if it is not addressed in a timely manner, the damage could spread throughout the foundation of the home.

It is important to remember that even the simplest of chimney repairs should only be handled by a professional chimney repair person. The average person who tries to repair their chimney may end up causing more problems instead of solving them. In addition, they put themselves at serious risk for bodily injury if they are not used to climbing up on the roof. The Chimney Safety Institute of America is a great place to find professionals who are trained to deal with many of these issues. Annual cleaning and inspection is a must-do for homeowners wanting to save money in the long term. Catching little issues before they become catastrophic is why expert eyes are needed.