If there’s one thing a homeowner hates, it’s a leak. Whether you have a leaky pipe in the bathroom and end up with a flooded bathroom floor or your dishwasher starts to leak and you end up with a flooded kitchen, wherever that leak occurs, there’s going to be work and, perhaps, money involved for the fix and cleanup. There’s another place where leaks can occur that can cause major damage, and that’s your fireplace and chimney system. There are several places that your chimney can be leaking, and when you call Jiminy Chimney Masonry and Repair, we know all the places to check to make sure they are sealed up and not letting any precipitation in.
One of the first areas we’ll check out is your flashing. Because the spot where your chimney meets your roof is especially susceptible to rain seeping in, contractors have developed a great way to seal this area up tight, and that’s using flashing. The flashing is the metal strips that you can see right at the base of your chimney. These strips are layered in such a way as to divert the water away from that base to head down the slope of the roof and out through the rain gutters, where it eventually is moved away from your foundation as well. The problem is, these strips can get loose or tear in a strong wind or rain storm, so it’s important to make sure that they are secured.
Another area that can cause problems is your chimney crown. This is the very top-most built-on part of the chimney structure. It is a concrete piece that is built on to the chimney top, and it has sloped sides with an overhang of a good two inches so that when precipitation hits, it flows away from the base of the chimney and onto the roof. If your chimney crown has sustained damage, cracks, or breakage in the concrete, you could be experiencing leakage.
One very important line of defense against chimney leaks is the chimney cap. This sits on top of the chimney crown, and is a piece that isn’t attached. Some homeowners don’t have a chimney cap, but this isn’t a wise decision because of the protection it offers. It has a top that is solid, so rain doesn’t go down your chimney, and the top is designed with a sloped roof, so that water is directed to the chimney crown. Smoke is still allowed to exit through the sides, but the sides are made of a metal mesh, so that animals, birds, and blowing debris can’t get in the chimney and cause blockages.
As you can see, a chimney cap is a top-notch guard against precipitation getting into your chimney. If your chimney cap is damaged or if you don’t have a chimney cap, give Jiminy Chimney Masonry and Repair a call and let us do the repairs or set you up with a chimney cap to keep your chimney dry!