A chimney is an architectural and practical component of your home, and installation requires significant attention to detail. If you already have a chimney, first assess it for necessary repairs and maintenance. After significant damage or due to structural inefficiencies, your home may need a new chimney installation.
Signs You Need a Chimney Repair
When excessive moisture begins to affect the brick and mortar joints, white, chalky staining, or efflorescence, can appear on the exterior of your chimney. Cleaning the staining will improve the aesthetics, but not address the underlying moisture issue causing the problem.
Crumbling chimney liner
“Shaling” occurs when your chimney liner deteriorates and shards fall off, collecting in your fireplace. Shaling can result from regular wear and tear or from a serious underlying problem. Regardless of the cause, this problem will need to be repaired or replaced by a professional and is not one you should ignore.
Flaking exterior bricks
“Spalling” is damage to the outside of the chimney. When you see bits of masonry near the bottom of your chimney structure, it is a sign that moisture may have entered your masonry and forced pieces off.
A highly flammable material, creosote, builds up over time on your chimney interior. This material is easily removed with a professional cleaning, but many homeowners often overlook the maintenance. When a flame ignites the creosote, it causes a chimney fire. If you notice loud cracking and popping coming and thick smoke emitting from the chimney, you should evacuate and call 9-1-1 as you may have a chimney fire.
A damaged or faulty liner can cause large amounts of smoke. If you confirm your chimney vent is open and continue to have excessive smoke, you will need your chimney repaired as soon as possible. Do not use your chimney until it is repaired, as a lot of smoke as it can be dangerous for your health.
Rust- The damper protects your chimney and home from moisture. A damper that is difficult to operate or has visible rust is a sign of moisture damage that can lead to water damage in your home if not addressed immediately
Stains on your wall or ceiling
When moisture gets into your chimney, it can seep into your home as well, discoloring the walls and ceiling near your fireplace/chimney. Over time, the water damage can reach your house framing and rot it.
Common Causes of Chimney Damage
- Neglected regular maintenance
- Wear and tear from years of use
- Extreme weather or natural disasters like fallen trees, heavy snow, lightning strikes, extreme winds, tornadoes, or earthquakes.
- Water entering through small cracks and increasing damage with annual freeze-thaw cycles
- Defects from structural issues
Consider New Installation
Outdoor placement: Chimneys that are placed on an outside wall are exposed to outdoor elements, which is not optimal. When there is no fire or wood in your stove or fireplace, your house will operate like a chimney and pull cold air into your home.
Safety: If your fireplace does not meet building safety codes, it may need a new liner installed or a new chimney installed.
Insulation: Insulation is vital for a chimney used for a stove or fireplace that is intended to provide heat. Be sure to have proper insulation installed with your chimney.
Visual appeal: Your chimney is a structural component of your home which should enhance its visual appeal. If your chimney detracts from the beauty of your home, installation may be your best option. For new chimney installation, always consider how the design and plan will fit with your home’s artistry.
Severe damage- When left untreated, chimney damage will worsen. If the damage is too severe, or there are many different forms of damage you may need an installation rather than a repair.
How We Can Help
Severe chimney damage may require you to install a new chimney, but it can be difficult to know where to begin and who to trust with chimney installation. At Chimney & Masonry Outfitters, we emphasize attention to detail while striving to empower you as a homeowner through education. Our craftsmen will bring the architect’s vision to reality with precision and artistry to ensure the chimney compliments your dream home.
Chimney & Masonry Outfitters is a full-service fireplace and masonry provider. We service, repair and build chimneys in and around the Indianapolis area. We strive to persevere and restore existing chimney and masonry structures through careful brick-matches and proper industry practices
Other Chimney Services
From assessment to repair, we have a range of services to cover all of your chimney needs. Listed below are our most common chimney services, read our full list of services and descriptions here !
- Chimney sweep
- Chimney inspection
- Chase covers
- Rain caps
- Aluminum or chimney liners
- Chimney leak assessment
- Crown Repair & Replacement
- Chimney Rebuild
- Chimney Installation
Contact us today at 1-317-500-1250 or OFFICE@CMOUTFITTERS.COM to schedule an appointment or learn more about our chimney or masonry services. Head to our blog for more tips on chimney and fireplace care.