Chimneys and fireplaces hold a special place for many people. Fireplaces are reminiscent of warm and cozy nights on a cold day, or lighting up a fire on a holiday morning. So when a chimney or fireplace is having some wear and tear, it may lead homeowners to worry about the rest of their home. Repairing chimney cracks may seem like a scary renovation to many homeowners, but regular maintenance to a chimney is easier than it sounds. Keeping tabs on your chimney’s condition is a really good way to prolong its life.
Cracks in your chimney can be very dangerous. Cracks in a chimney that continue out to the exterior can cause a chimney fire. Chimney fires can ignite quickly. Homeowners that have experienced them describe the sound a chimney fire makes as an explosion followed by a sound similar to a freight train. On the bright side, chimney repairs are fairly easy to do.
Mortar is the paste that holds bricks together. Mortar is smooth and solid, but as time passes, the elements make the mortar deteriorate, causing it to fall apart. Since mortar is softer than brick, the mortar will always deteriorate before the brick. Repointing is the process of scraping out the old mortar and replacing it with new mortar.
Another way to maintain your chimney is to caulk around the outside of your chimney. Doing this will prevent water from leaking into your home. The concrete cap, called the crown, covers the top of the chimney. Typically, gaps form between the crown and the liner inside of your chimney, this liner is called a flue. Water that enters this gap can flow down the sides of the flue.
Another way to repair your chimney DIY style is to repair cracks around the crown area. Cracks in the crown of the chimney are even more serious than cracks on the vertical sections of the chimney. It’s more serious because water is more likely to settle on the crown. These repairs can be done with pre-mixed cement or mortar patches.
As you can see, small repairs to chimney cracks can be easier than most homeowners initially believe. Doing regular maintenance can help with small damages becoming a major project. If you are noticing larger cracks or leaning in your chimney, call a professional to take a look. If you have any questions or need a free estimate contact Jerry’s Waterproofing.