Why is my chimney leaking?

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Water should never enter your home through your chimney, but occasionally a problem might occur and rain could be entering your home or the fireplace, causing damage. In order to repair your leaky chimney in Holland, Grand Rapids, and surrounding areas, we will look at what kind of leak you have and determine the best way to fix it.

Water Enters the Top

We often find that the simplest problem behind your chimney leaking is that the top of the chimney is not covered. The chimney cover, or in chimney terms, a chimney cap, is important for keeping out animals, debris and water. If your chimney flue were to get blocked by anything that might enter in through the top of the chimney, your family could suffer from the effects of Carbon Monoxide poisoning, which could be fatal. It is important to look into getting a cover if you don’t already have one.

Cracks in the Crown

The cement part on the top of the chimney is called the crown. The crown prevents rain, snow and other weather elements from falling into your chimney and dripping down your masonry. A crack in your crown could be a sign of water damage, which is natural over time, but should be fixed to prevent the water from reaching further into the home. We can typically fix the crack without needing to replace anything else. If the crown is too damaged and repairs have been put off for too long, we may have to remove it and relay the masonry.

Leaking From the Inside

We’ve had customers with water damage on the walls adjacent to their chimney because of a problem with condensation. If a liner is not fitted in the chimney or mechanical flue, moisture from the gas fumes could soak into the bricks and cause water to seep into the walls.

Chimney Flashing

The flashing keeps water from entering through the roof where the chimney protrudes. There is a large gap between the bricks and the roof so the home can naturally adjust throughout the year without causing damage to the walls or chimney from rubbing. This gap would allow water to pour in if the flashing does not seal it up. This is typically aluminum placed in the gap and on top of the shingles with waterproof sealants (like tar) to keep water from pushing in. The flashing and sealant won’t last forever, so you may need a chimney sweep to examine it for maintenance. The National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA) recommends having your chimney system inspected and swept annually after the burning season has ended. This typically includes an exterior inspection of the chimney components, ensuring that you are on top of any and all repairs needed to keep your chimney functional.

Leaking Bricks

Bricks and mortar are porous and leaking can easily occur. So how do you prevent moisture from seeping into your home? The answer is simple; by having a trained chimney technician apply water-proofing directly on to your chimney. For the last twenty years, Hancock Chimney Service has performed countless water-proofing applications, ensuring that you can rest easy knowing that the work is being done correctly.

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