Your chimney should always be in tip-top condition to avoid incidents that can endanger your property and your life.
Did you know that at least a thousand fire incidents in Ireland each year are due to problematic chimneys? Are you also aware that one of the leading causes of accidental carbon monoxide poisoning in the country is a blocked flue?
Clearly, you cannot neglect this structure in your house. If it is damaged, get chimney repair services ASAP. Failure to address problems immediately can result in costly repairs. It can even put you and your loved ones in harm’s way.
For those with an untrained eye like you, spotting these problems can be difficult. This is why we’ve put together a guide on how you would know if calling chimney specialists is already necessary.
The crown is the part that covers the opening of the chimney. It is also sometimes referred to as chimney wash. Made of concrete, this slab’s primary purpose is to prevent water from entering the flue.
The crown is built to last many years. However, since it is exposed to elements, it is not spared from damages. One of the most common problems with this part is cracking.
When your crown is cracked, water can entre and wreak havoc on your flue system. The moisture can also damage your chimney’s masonry.
Spotting a cracked crown is easy. The only challenging part is going up your roof to check on it.
Do you see white stains on the bricks? This is a sign that there is too much moisture in your chimney, possibly due to a water leak. The white stains are actually powdery salt residues.
This moisture damage should be addressed immediately; otherwise, it would compromise the structural integrity of your chimney.
The presence of cracked or broken bricks in the fireplace can be an indication of shaling. What is shaling? It is when flue tiles crack and eventually, fall off. This is a serious problem that requires immediate attention.
Here’s the deal:
The flue liner plays an integral role in preventing fires. When shaling occurs, the liner is unable to do this job. This can put your chimney (and your entire house) at risk of catching fire.
Admittedly, dents or fissures on the liner are as easy to spot as those on the crown. A CCTV chimney survey needs to be done to know for sure if they are present.
Cracks on the exterior of your masonry are telltale signs of a spalling issue. Spalling or the breaking off of bricks and stones happens because of moisture and changes in temperature.
The process starts with water seeping through the mortar. The presence of moisture then causes the brick and mortar to contract and expand as temperatures rise and fall. In the long run, this results in the bricks cracking and breaking apart.
When left unaddressed, spalling can weaken your masonry. Worse, it can cause your entire chimney to crumble.
Is the damper difficult to operate? Are you seeing rust on it? These can mean that you have a moisture problem in your flue.
You cannot afford to have a damper that is in a poor state. You need it to work properly whether you are using the fireplace or not.
It is what keeps smoke from the fire off your house when the fireplace is active. It also keeps cold air from getting inside when there’s no fire.
Excessive moisture in your flue can cause damper malfunction. It can promote the development of rust and premature deterioration of the structure. The bigger problem, however, is its effect on the flue systems. As mentioned earlier, moisture can damage the liner, making it less effective in preventing fires.
It is not easy to determine whether a chimney needs repair or not. Often, noticeable signs appear when the problem is already severe. This is why it is important for your chimney to undergo regular surveys. This lets you spot damages before they become too costly to repair.
For professional chimney repair services, only trust Access Chimneys – Ireland’s top company for repairs and other chimney services. Call us today at +353 872805825
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