Your fireplace might still be in peek use, but now is the time to start thinking about chimney repairs! While it might be months until the warmer, sunnier weather allows for repairs, planning now allows you to be ahead of the curve. You’ll know the scope of your repairs and how much they’re likely to cost, and you’ll be first in line on your chimney sweep’s schedule so you won’t be left waiting for repairs, and you’ll be able to schedule repairs at your convenience.
The first step in planning your chimney repairs is determining if you require repairs and what repairs are needed. Like any appliance or home structure, chimneys and fireplaces breakdown over time and need to be repaired or replaced. Ignoring chimney and fireplace problems can lead to a dramatic and expensive deterioration of the chimney structure. It can put your home at risk for a chimney fire, smoke damage or water damage. Some common signs of damage you should be on the lookout for include:
How to tell if your chimney needs to be repaired.
- Cracks or holes in the chimney.
Masonry chimney structures are prone to cracking or crumbling over time, due primarily to water absorption. Cracks or crumbles in the chimney can allow water to seep into the chimney or into your home, and it can weaken your entire chimney structure.
- Discoloration on the chimney.
Discoloration of the chimney structure, whether it’s white, black, blue or green, can be an indication that water is entering the chimney masonry and causing damage.
- Moisture or debris in the firebox.
When determining if your chimney needs repairs, don’t forget to check your firebox! Moisture at the base of your firebox is a sure sign that water is getting into your chimney. Chunks of debris or flue tile can indicate that your chimney liner is deteriorating.
- Rusted or stuck damper.
Most dampers are metal-on-metal construction, and they are one of the first chimney elements to break down from age. They can warp and fail to seal or even become stuck due to exposure to moisture or exposure to the extreme heat from your fireplace.
- Smoke or odors entering your home.
Your chimney could have underlying damage or improper construction if you’re getting smoke back in your home when you light a fire, or if your chimney is letting a foul odor into your home.
What to do if your chimney needs to be repaired.
If your chimney is showing one of the above signs of damage, or if your chimney sweep told you that it needs to be repaired during your annual inspection, act now! Prepare for your chimney repairs by calling A to Z Chimney Service to schedule an appointment today. One of our certified chimney technicians can assess the scope of your chimney damage. They will also give you a quote for repairs and even get repairs scheduled as soon as possible.