How Water Can Ruin Your Masonry Chimney | Nexus Chimney Services

September 16, 2019

Chimneys typically tend to receive neither the attention nor the concern usually afforded to other household systems. However, chimneys are far from empty black columns; their simple appearance disguises an intricate mechanism capable of multiple, complex functions. When considering the rest of your home maintenance jobs, it’s important to consider how weather and moisture can easily ruin this incredible invention. Below is more information on how water can ruin masonry chimneys, and what you can do about it.

Chimney Issues Caused by Water 

All masonry materials, except stone, will deteriorate quickly when exposed to water. This is mainly due to the freeze/thaw cycle, in which moisture that has penetrated the materials freezes and expands, causing small cracks to widen. And even though stone itself usually isn’t as badly affected by this phenomenon, the mortar between it can be badly cracked.

Furthermore, water in a chimney can weaken, rust, or outright destroy metal components that have not been properly treated. Lastly, when moisture mixes with creosote in a wood-burning chimney system, it will generate a highly disagreeable odor that can permeate a home and is difficult to remove. It is the rain and moisture of summer, not the heat, which causes a spike in chimney odor.

How to Prevent Water Damage in Your Chimney

In order to protect your chimney from water damage, it’s important to schedule regular chimney inspection, maintenance, and repair. By far the simplest measure you can take to prevent water damage is installing a chimney cap, or rain cover, over the flue. A strong, well-designed chimney cap will not only keep water out, but also prevent birds and animals from entering and nesting in the chimney. Chimney caps also function as spark arrestors, preventing sparks from landing on the roof or other nearby combustible material.

How to Select a Quality Chimney Cap

A good chimney cap should be constructed of sturdy, durable, corrosion-resistant material that can last a lifetime. Chimney caps can be designed to cover a single flue, multiple flues, or the entire chimney top. A full-coverage chimney cap usually represents a larger initial investment, but provides the most long-term protection, as it covers the entire chimney crown. Finally, chimney cap should be easily removable to facilitate inspection and cleaning.

Schedule Your Chimney Inspection with Our Apex Chimney Company Today

If you are in need of chimney inspections, repairs, or maintenance in Apex NC or the surrounding areas, call Nexus Chimney Services today. When you schedule with us early, you can beat the rush and enjoy a nice, crackling fire this winter. Call us today to schedule your free service estimate.