The construction of a chimney includes many measures meant to prevent water from entering the system and damaging the masonry. But years back, adding a protective waterproofing layer to the masonry itself wasn't an option, because the masonry's function is more complex than meets the eye. Bricks and mortar are porous, and they need to be to do their job -- gases and small particles need to move through the masonry and be expelled from the chimney.
Today, we can add a high-quality waterproofing sealant that’s 100-percent vapor-permeable, solving both problems. This sealant keeps water from working its way into the masonry but still allows the brick and mortar to "breathe" and usher those harmful gases and small particles out.
We can also add waterproofing sealant to your chimney's crown, allowing it to more effectively stand up to the weather, and do its job of directing rain and snow away from the flue.
If you have a chimney that's more than 15 years old, we highly recommend adding a waterproofing sealant -- it can extend the life of your chimney dramatically and make it safer and more efficient in the process.
We've talked about the benefits of chimney masonry's porous qualities, but there are, of course, problems that come along, too. As your chimney masonry sits open to the elements, moisture can seep into the brick and mortar. The moisture itself can lead to deterioration, but the way water expands and contracts as it freezes and melts is even more problematic. This process can create cracks, gaps, spalling, and overall degradation. When it comes to the integrity of your chimney, water can be a slow and steady destruction crew and that's why it makes sense to be vigilant in fighting against it.
As a preventative measure, waterproofing sealant can be hugely valuable -- it's an affordable investment into the life of your chimney and it can help you avoid costly restoration and rebuilding.
We recommend using a waterproofing sealant to protect your chimney from water's damaging effects - but that's just one of the preventative measures we encourage homeowners to look into.
Getting your annual chimney inspection is step No. 1 in keeping ahead of water damage. A-1 Chimney Specialist's CSIA-certified technicians can thoroughly inspect your chimney to find any water damage or current or impending sources of leaks and recommend the right repairs to make your chimney whole again.
We see many homes that are missing chimney caps. Those may seem like a small piece of a big system, but chimney caps do valuable work -- they help keep rain, snow and sleet (not to mention animals) from getting into your flue. Installing a chimney cap or replacing a damaged one is a worthwhile preventative measure.
Do you see loose caulk around your chimney flashing? Or holes in your flashing? Flashing protects the area where your chimney and the roofline meet, so faulty caulk work or holes can lead to leaks. If you see issues with your flashing, call A-1 Chimney Specialist -- we can fix it before a small problem becomes a big one.
If your chimney damper -- which blocks off the flue and keeps water out when the chimney isn't in use -- isn't working correctly, you may need to have it repaired or replaced. We'll check the chimney damper during an inspection and recommend the best course of action.
If you're having problems with water getting into your chimney, or want to explore preventative measures such as waterproofing to keep that from happening, call A-1 Chimney Specialist at 931.967.3595.
Sometimes, chimney leaks start with problems with the flashing, so be sure to have A-1 experts check it out.