During the off-season, it is quite common for homeowners to notice chimney leaks. During the winter, the fireplace and chimney are used daily, but it is often overlooked unless there is a problem. Since many signs of a leaky chimney are quite subtle, homeowners may not notice until there is substantial damage. When you suspect a leak in your chimney, you should call the professionals at West Texas Chimney and Venting Solutions right away! There are several areas in your chimney that could cause a chimney leak, and we want to help you understand each of these parts.
The first thing any chimney professional will check when there is a leak is the flashing. It is often installed incorrectly and becomes dislodged or allows leaks through exposed nail holes and gaps. We check the flashing because even properly-installed flashing can become dislodged by animal tampering and strong storms. Since the flashing protects the most vulnerable point of the chimney – the intersection of roof and chimney – it is often the cause of major chimney leaks. If you have had recent roof repairs or replacement, you should call a chimney professional to ensure your flashing is installed correctly. Not all roofers have the training or experience to properly install chimney flashing, and a chimney leak is not fun!
The chimney crown has specifications that make it optimal for chimney protection. While the chimney cap prevents water from entering the flue opening, the crown protects the rest of the chimney. The crown prevents water from entering the space between the flue pipe and the masonry by directing precipitation off the and away from the chimney masonry. If your chimney crown wasn’t constructed by a chimney professional, it may be made with the cheaper option of mortar.
At West Texas Chimney, all of our crowns are constructed from concrete and reinforced with mesh, creating a crown that lasts for many years. Our crowns are also slanted and have the necessary thickness. They also feature a drip edge that keeps the water off the masonry. If your crown isn’t made properly, we can rebuild it to custom fit your chimney. If it was made properly and needs a repair, we can seal it, closing gaps and cracks as if they were never there! Let West Texas fix your crown today and prevent chimney leaks tomorrow!
Masonry damage that is minor or major can lead to chimney leaks. Winter damage affects the mortar between the bricks causing cracks, gaps, and even crumbling masonry. This “spalling” masonry can allow water directly into your chimney and home. The only way to prevent this type of chimney leak is to have an annual chimney inspection to repair damaged masonry before it affects the rest of the chimney and home. Another great way to prevent this type of masonry damage is to have a chimney waterproofing with a vapor-permeable water-repellent.
Your chimney is one of the most important systems in your home, and it can also cause the most damage because of its size and exposure to the elements. Chimney leaks will not only affect your chimney, but it also causes leaks, stains, and water damage in the rest of the home. Call West Texas Chimney and Venting Solutions at 806-358-0817 and let our team assess your leaky chimney today!