Many homeowners take their chimney for granted and assume that the structure is a worry-free part of the house. However, problems do occur, and a chimney in disrepair should be taken care of as soon as possible. In fact, a damaged chimney is a serious fire hazard. If you notice anything amiss with your chimney, be sure to schedule a chimney inspection as soon as possible. Here are some signs that your chimney requires repair.
A leaky chimney is a significant detriment to home safety for many reasons. First, rain leaking through the chimney introduces unwanted moisture into your home. Water can cause mold, and mold damages your property if left untreated. Also, a leaking chimney means there is a crack or breach somewhere in the structure. If you have noticed dripping water or excessive moisture around your chimney, your chimney is likely damaged or the cap needs replacement.
Deteriorating Mortar Joints
Damaged mortar joints in the chimney masonry must be repaired quickly. When the mortar is damaged, the masonry is exposed to more water, which accelerates the deterioration of the entire structure. When the weather freezes, the excess moisture solidifies inside cracks in the masonry. After repeated freeze-thaw cycles, larger cracks can develop. In fact, the entire chimney could collapse if the damaged mortar is not repaired.
White Staining or Efflorescence
The white discoloration or staining you find on a chimney is called efflorescence. While it’s easy to remove the staining, cleaning it does not solve the moisture problem, which causes the white residue. Efflorescence is a sign of excess water in the bricks. If you don’t deal with the issue quickly, premature deterioration of the chimney is very likely.
Spalling happens when water seeps into brick, natural stone, or concrete and forces the surface of the masonry to peel or flake off. Salt can also push outward from the inside and causes spalling. Luckily, it is relatively easy to identify spalling since pieces of masonry often fall from the chimney. Eventually, the spalling masonry will continue to crumble, and ultimately, the structure will be destroyed.
Rusting on your firebox or damper is a clear sign that there is excess moisture in your chimney. You may not notice rust on the damper initially, but if it appears to be malfunctioning, it could be due to the rusting.
Call the Experts at Champion Chimneys for Chimney Cleaning Today!
Champion Chimneys, Inc. is a fully licensed, bonded, and insured chimney service company that has served customers in Baltimore County, Howard County, and Anne Arundel County, Maryland since 2001. Our team is trained and certified by Certified Chimney Professionals, Inc. (CCP, Inc.). Courteous service is our trademark, and our crews arrive on time in uniform, driving fully equipped trucks. We specialize in all aspects of your chimney system. Whether you need chimney and flue cleaning service or a full chimney rebuild or inspection, contact us at 443-Chimney today and let us fix all your chimney problems. Also, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest.