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Old Smokey's Fireplace & Chimney's Blog

April Showers Bring Chimney Damage

If April showers bring May flowers, what do they do to masonry chimneys? Whatever month the rain comes down, it poses a threat to your chimney.

Old Smokey’s Fireplace & Chimney is familiar with the onslaughts of seasonal meteorological assaults on your chimney.

Let’s take a closer look.

Cold (or warm) April showers leave an impact on bricks and mortar. The rains exert physical stress on chimneys.

Old Smokey’s understands what damage excessive moisture can do to your chimney. Moisture in your chimney can damage the brickwork, chimney crown, flashing or liner. Brick absorbs water. Gaps, cracks or crumbling in mortar joints can allow this water to spread to other parts of your chimney.

Old Smokey’s has seen this many times.

A good move if you suspect water intrusion is a professional chimney inspection. We have to find out what’s going on — if anything. Water intrusion problems might not be seen by the average person at first glance. We suggest you schedule an appointment with Old Smokey’s today. Call us at 260-424-0009 or 800-876-6539 or click here.

Have Old Smokey’s Fireplace & Chimney take a professional look at your chimney’s brickwork. We’ll assess whether damage from April showers warrants chimney repair or rebuild.

Spalling is just one type of brick damage. Spalling is the surface deterioration of your brickwork. Cracks appear. Pieces of brick begin to form chips and break off. It’s a breakdown that demands attention, often resulting in brick replacement or more.

Let Old Smokey’s conduct an honest assessment of current conditions and guide you through recommended remedial options, ranging from repointing to selective brick replacement to chimney rebuilds.

The signs of leakage can be visual or smell-related.

Perhaps you see rust streaks, brick deterioration or vegetation on your chimney. Maybe your chimney smells damp, mildewed or moldy. How can you tell for sure what the cause is? A professional annual inspection is your best insurance policy against further damage from water or moisture intrusion. During an inspection, we identify areas of water entry, examine the flashing, the roof area surrounding the chimney, the chimney cap, the chimney crown and the masonry of the chimney itself.

One obvious remedy is to waterproof your chimney. Our highly trained technicians can apply the most effective waterproofing products available, designed for chimney systems and protective of your masonry.

Perhaps your moisture problem is caused my improperly installed or poor-quality flashing material. Properly installed and maintained flashing is an effective tool for keeping water out of your chimney system.

We are proud of our Old Smokey’s trained professionals.

For more than 20 years, Old Smokey’s has delivered excellence to homeowners in northern Indiana, northern Ohio and mid-Michigan. Homeowners from Elkhart in the west to Ypsilanti in the east, from Lansing in the north to Defiance and Fort Wayne in the south are served by Old Smokey’s.

Call us at today 260-424-0009 or 800-876-6539 or schedule an appointment online.

When you call, if you just happen to hear the Beatles’ song “Rain” while you’re waiting, that just means we’re not afraid of a little spring rain.

The night terrors of a leaky chimney

What’s that drip drip drip in the quiet of the night? You know it’s not the “plop plop fizz fizz oh what a relief it is” of the famous 1965 Alka-Seltzer TV ad (reprised for the 2007 Superbowl). And you know it’s not as terrifying as the beating sound immortally described in “The Tell-Tale Heart” by Edgar Allan Poe. No, it’s nothing like that at all. You typically do not hear ANYTHING from a chimney leak. That actually makes it scarier.

So, let Old Smokey’s Fireplace & Chimney be your chimney-leak Sherlock Holmes.

What are the signs and symptoms of a chimney leak?

Water damaged chimney - Fort Wayne IN - Old Smokey's Fireplace and Chimney

Truth be told, the signs of a chimney leak are more apt to be visual or tactile than aural. The signs might even be olfactory if a leak is causing mold to form. Nevertheless, there are identifiable markers of a chimney leak. Those signs might be on or within the chimney itself or in associated elements within or outside your structure.

From experience, we at Old Smokey’s can share with you several tell-tale signs. Water in your hearth, crumbling mortar joints, visible water around your flashing, damaged roof shingles or cracked brickwork come to mind.

But what are the causes of chimney leaks?

Chimney leaks result from a variety of causes, some rather simple, others more complex. Let’s go over some of these root causes. You may simply be getting rainwater dripping down because you don’t have a chimney cover or cap. It’s possible you have a chimney leak resulting from leaking bricks that because of age and wear simply need replacing. You may have an improper or damaged chimney liner or a damaged flue. A common cause of chimney leaks is bad flashing or bad sealant around the flashing.

Old Smokey’s is both humble and open-minded: you might have a chimney leak from a bizarre and unusual cause we have not seen in 30 years. It’s unlikely but possible.

Why get an inspection?

The best way to sleep at night not worried about the silent danger of a chimney leak is to get a chimney inspection. Only a chimney masonry professional can be the most reliable Sherlock Holmes for detecting brick or mortar erosion, flashing damage or other potential breaches. That’s why the experience and training of Old Smokey’s technicians is a wise investment.

What takes place with a chimney inspection?

It depends on the degree of detail you choose. Old Smokey’s performs three defined levels of National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) chimney inspections. The assessments range from observing discernible cracks to sophisticated video scanning. In any case, Old Smokey’s is proficient and adept at finding the causes of leaks.

How are chimney leaks repaired?

Of course, the answer to that depends upon the cause of the leak. Rest assured Old Smokey’s will speak to you in plain English to review the best options to remedy any problems you might have. Whether we are talking proper sealing or new bricks or flashing, we will give you straight talk.

We’ve been serving folks just like you for 30+ years. We’ve built a solid reputation in northern Indiana, northern Ohio and mid-Michigan. Old Smokey’s highly trained service staff are certified specialists. So, don’t hesitate to call Old Smokey’s at 800-876-6539. Oh what a relief it will be.

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