The chimney is an essential ventilation structure that carries smoke and noxious gases emitted by the fireplace away from your home. It also provides the draft that keeps the fireplace burning so that your home stays warm and comfortable during colder months. However, most of the chimney runs through an enclosed structure inside the home or is located on the roof where it’s not easily accessible to most homeowners. Because of this, it’s not always easy to discern when chimney repairs are needed. Here are a few telltale signs to look out for.
3 Ways to Tell When Your Home Needs Chimney Repairs
1. Rusty Damper
Excessive moisture in the chimney will cause the flue lining to develop cracks over time. When this happens, hazardous gases from the fireplace are poorly vented, and heat makes its way into vulnerable parts of the house, which can result in a fire. You’ll know that your furnace has a moisture problem when the damper starts to get rusty. The rust will likely make the damper difficult to open and close, requiring chimney repairs.
2. Bad Smells
When in use, your fireplace should give off the pleasant smell of burning wood. However, if you’re choking on soot and creosote fumes instead, the chimney's updraft mechanism may not be working correctly. Your chimney may also emit odorless gasses like carbon monoxide, which can cause severe respiratory problems and even death. If this problem occurs, get chimney repairs immediately.
3. Spalling & Shaling
Your chimney’s crown covers its opening and keeps out the elements. Damage to this part of the chimney causes water to seep behind the liner, leading to cracks and shaling on the sides of the structure, which is visible from the ground. However, you can spot damage to this area early by hiring a contractor to inspect the chimney from the rooftop. The contractor can make minor chimney repairs and do waterproofing to mitigate the damage and prevent extensive, costly repairs.
If you suspect your chimney is in disrepair, the contractors at Ray St. Clair Roofing Inc. in Fairfield, OH, can find and fix the cause of the problem. Aside from chimney repairs, they provide services like seamless aluminum gutters and skylight installations, as well as roof replacements. Take a closer look at their chimney work online, or call (513) 874-1234 to schedule service.