One of the biggest problems that homeowners experience with their chimney is leaks. In order to remain at peak working condition, regular inspections of the cap, flashing and crown are necessary to ensure there is no damage that could cause a future leak.
The Chimney Cap
The purpose of the chimney cap is to protect the flue from the elements, debris, and animals. The cap also protects against wind which helps to keep the draft in the chimney consistent. A constant draft is necessary to keep the smoke vented out of the home. If the cap becomes damaged then water can flow into the flue which will cause further damage. By having regular inspections, any damage can be spotted and repaired before it turns into a big problem.
Flashing is comprised of many thin layers of metal that overlap to prevent water penetration. It is placed where the roof meets the chimney which is a vulnerable area. This is usually where most leaks occur as it takes a skilled hand to properly install the flashing. Unfortunately, many people do not use qualified professionals to install the flashing correctly which leads to water penetration. Using a qualified, experienced professional to install flashing will make a huge difference in preventing water damage.
The top of the chimney needs to have a crown to keep water at bay. Also referred to as a chimney wash, the crown is a large slab that covers the top of the chimney opening and can be made of stone, concrete or metal. The main purpose of the crown is to protect against weather and will wear over time due to temperature fluctuations and exposure to wind, rain and snow. If a crack forms in the crown, water will collect and the crack can expand in the freeze-thaw cycle.
With regular maintenance and inspections, water damage can be avoided. Inspections should occur annually; if it’s been about a year since your last inspection, we encourage you to contact us today to schedule an appointment.
The team here at Fiddler on the Roof Chimney Service is at your service, and happy to answer any questions that you may have!