If you own a home with a chimney, keeping it in good condition is important. Regular chimney maintenance and repair are essential for protecting your home from pests. Here's what you need to know about five common types of chimney repair and maintenance tasks and what they involve.
Preventative maintenance involves taking proactive measures to protect your chimney from future damage and decay. These preventative measures could include:
- Regular visual inspections
- Waterproofing the brickwork
- Coating the interior walls with a heat-resistant paint
- Checking the surrounding flashing for damage
These steps will help protect your home from water damage caused by heavy rain or snowfall.
Pests can cause serious damage to your chimney if left unchecked. Common pests like birds, squirrels, raccoons, and bats may try to make their way into your flue in search of warmth and security. This nesting behavior is dangerous and could lead to damage or even a fire. To prevent pests from accessing your chimney, install a pest-proof lid, called a chimney cap, on top of it.
Annual inspections consist of having a professional examine the flue liner, brickwork, mortar joints, damper assembly, and chase cover for any signs of damage. It is a good idea to also schedule a chimney cleaning at this time to remove creosote that can accumulate inside your chimney. Creosote can cause fires inside your chimney's flue liner if allowed to build up.
Tuckpointing is minor repair work done to your chimney for aesthetic purposes. For example, the process could include filling minor holes and cracks with fresh mortar or color-matching a stained section of mortar to the rest of the chimney, giving your chimney a uniform and aesthetically pleasing look.
Chimney re-pointing is more comprehensive repair work and involves replacing existing mortar with new mortar to maintain your chimney's structural integrity. Re-pointing may also include replacing any broken or crumbling bricks with new ones to increase the strength and stability of the structure. While it can be expensive due to the highly skilled nature of the work, it is necessary for safety reasons.
Taking care of your chimney is essential if you want it to last for years without major repairs. If you have any questions about chimney repair, contact a mason. They will be able to provide you with the most accurate information and guidance you need to keep your home safe.