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Do you have an existing chimney that is in poor repair? If so, you could be losing a great deal of heat from your home. Are you building a new home and want to add a fireplace or wood stove? You’ll need the right chimney in order to make sure it works efficiently. Let us find you a contractor who is experienced at building and repairing chimneys by filling out the form below.
Some signs can make it obvious that it’s time to have your chimney repaired. If there are missing or cracked mortar joints or bricks, this is a sign your chimney needs work. You may notice pieces of mortar crumbling and falling into your fireplace or stove. The chimney could also lean to one side or the top of it could be missing. Some damage may not be noticeable because it is located inside the chimney, so this fixture needs to be inspected periodically by a professional. Many chimney sweeps are willing to do this for a nominal fee whenever they perform routine cleaning.
When you think of a chimney, you usually think about the part that’s visible. That’s not all there is to a chimney, as several parts actually make up this structure:
If you’re planning to build a new chimney, there are several things to think about. You should consider local building codes and safety ordinances in order to make sure you are in compliance with them. Chimneys can be made from brick, stone or concrete, so you will need to choose a material that matches your home’s exterior. The slope of the roof needs to be considered, since this will affect how flashing is attached as well as the placement of the chimney cap.
When chimneys are not properly maintained, the risk of a fire breaking out is greatly increased. Have them cleaned at least once a year by a professional chimney sweep in order to remove creosote. Take care not to burn charcoal, cloth or plastic inside your fireplace, as this also increases the risk of fire. Before using your fireplace for the first time each season, you should climb onto your roof and inspect your chimney in order to ensure that animals have not build a nest inside it. This should be done even if you have a chimney cap in place because the cap only deters animals rather than completely eliminating their access.
Chimney repair costs vary based upon the extent of the damage and type of materials used in construction. Units made from natural stone could cost more to repair if matching rocks are difficult to come by. New construction varies in price based upon the size of the chimney and material used to build it. The quality of workmanship also makes a difference. Inexperienced contractors may charge less but provide shoddy workmanship that would result in repairs only a short time later.
The best way is to install a protective cap over the top of the chimney that will allow smoke to exit, but prevent animals from getting inside it.
A metal liner on the inside of your chimney can help prevent lost heat through cracks in the mortar that appear over time. It can also help prevent creosote buildup, and will make your chimney much easier to clean as well.
Chimneys need to be swept and inspected at least once a year, preferably before you start to use your fireplace on a regular basis. This can prevent smoke build up, chimney fires, and a host of other problems.
If you live in an area that is prone to heavy rain, then yes, you should probably have a chimney cap installed. Not only does it prevent rain from falling down your chimney, it prevents animals from being able to nest there as well.
Both are equally effective at conducting heat, so the choice is largely a matter of aesthetics. Concrete chimneys may also cost slightly less to construct, and may therefore be better if you are on a very tight budget.
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