Wet spots on your ceiling around the chimney. Broken pieces of brick and mortar in the firebox or on the ground. Chalky white deposits on the outside of the chimney. These are all signs of a leak. Water can do sever damage to a chimney and fireplace. That is why fireplace safety experts recommended annual inspections in Dubuque IA to battle your chimney’s number one enemy: water. If you notice a chimney leak, it is crucial to act quickly. Homeowners in Dubuque know they can count on our team of chimney repair specialists when they have a leaky chimney.
A leaky chimney can cause water damage to your roof, ceiling and attic. It can also cause thousands of dollars’ worth of damage to your chimney system. Water deteriorates bricks and mortar which leads to spalling, when pieces of bricks and mortar chip and break. Eventually, this can cause such sever structural damage that a chimney rebuild is necessary. We encourage residents in the Tri-state area to give us a call as soon as they notice signs of a leaky chimney. The sooner we find the source of the problem and fix it, the more damage we can prevent.
Common Causes of Chimney Leaks In Dubuque IA
Without an inspection by a trained professional, it is not possible to accurately diagnose how water is getting into your chimney. There are four common culprits you can be on the lookout for:
Missing or Broken Flashing
Flashing is the metal strip that bridges the gap between your chimney and roof. It acts as a waterproof seal to prevent rain, snow and sleet from falling through that space. Overtime, it can deteriorate from rust, break or shift. This can allow enough water into your chimney system and home to cause damage to your attic, roof or chimney structure.
A Missing or Damaged Chimney Cap/Chase Cover
A chimney cap or chase cover protects the inside of the chimney—the chimney lining and flue—from water damage. Sitting at the top of the chimney, it acts like an umbrella allowing rain and snow to slide down it and away from the chimney. Fireplace experts recommend that all chimney’s have a cap or chase cover to improve the life of your chimney. Allowing rainwater and snow to freely fall into your chimney is a recipe for a cracked flue liner and deteriorating masonry. Chimney caps and chase covers can rust or become damaged through natural wear and tear or by a storm. If you notice that the cap on your chimney is missing or damaged, give us a call! We install chimney caps and chase covers for residents throughout Dubuque County.
A Damaged or Cracked Chimney Crown
The chimney crown is the cement cap that sits on top of the bricks and mortar. It creates a barrier to prevent water from seeping into the walls of the chimney. The bricks and mortar that make up the walls can act like a sponge. During the cold season, water in the masonry can freeze and thaw. This process causes serious damage to bricks and mortar. It can eventually weaken the masonry to the point where it could collapse. A chimney crown plays a big role in preventing this. If it is cracked or broken, it should be replaced quickly and coated with a waterproof seal to prevent these issues from arising.
A Faulty Chimney Liner
The purpose of a chimney liner is to protect the walls of the chimney from the high temperatures and caustic chemicals produced by the fire. If your chimney liner is not the right size or was installed incorrectly, it may result in excess condensation building up in your chimney after you use your fireplace. This condensation can cause the liner to warp and rust leading to more problems. If you have noticed moisture in the firebox of your fireplace, your chimney liner may be at fault. You can call an expert on our team to inspect your chimney lining and fireplace.
Call on a Qualified Chimney Sweep!
Fixing a leaky chimney is not a DIY project. If you notice any of the signs of a chimney leak or conditions that could lead to one, give us a call! We have the knowledge and expertise to uncover all of the pathways that may be allowing water into your chimney system and professionally resolve the problem. Give us a call today to repair your chimney leak or schedule an annual inspection for your home in Dubuque, IA or the Tri-state area.