What Are Different Types of Chimney Caps?

Your chimney is an important part of creating a home full of cozy heat and free of smoke. What many don’t realize is that there are a number of different components to a chimney that allow it to function at its best. One of the most important parts of your chimney is the chimney cap. Sitting atop your chimney system, the chimney cap is providing multiple important functions for your home.

What Does a Chimney Cap Do?

masonry chimney with a single flue chimney capThe chimney cap sits above the opening of your chimney’s flue where it prevents water, birds and debris from entering your home. It also keeps animals that are looking for a warm and dry place to build a nest from becoming your live-in neighbor. In addition to keeping things out, it also allows smoke and other byproducts that come from burning to escape, so that your home remains properly ventilated and warm.

Because it is such an important part of your chimney system it is important to make sure your chimney cap is properly installed and free of defects. Loose, bent, corroded, or improperly installed chimney caps can cause expensive damage if not corrected. At Lords Chimney, we are experts at spotting defects and making sure your chimney is functioning at its most efficient capacity.

All that being said, sometimes you might need to upgrade or replace your chimney cap. So, which type is right for your needs?

5 Types of Chimney Caps

Fortunately there are many different types of chimney caps available. This means that whether you are updating your chimney cap to match the look of a remodel or replacing a chimney cap due to damage, there is a chimney cap for your needs. Here are five types of chimney caps and why they might be the perfect fit for you.

1. Single-Flue Cap

The single-flue cap is perfect for chimneys with only one flue. It is designed to cover the one opening and provide a protective barrier against rain, snow, and debris. These caps can be made from many different metals such as stainless steel, copper, or galvanized steel. They are durable and cost-effective. They provide basic essential protection to your chimney, while remaining durable and affordable.

2. Multi-Flue Cap

The multi-flue cap is designed specifically to cover chimneys with multiple vents. There are a wide variety of designs and materials available, so that they can be customized to fit over several flues at once. For homeowners with multiple flues, these caps offer a more affordable solution for protection than purchasing and installing multiple single-flue caps.

3. Outside Mount Cap

The outside mount cap is installed directly on top of the chimney crown. Its design extends beyond the edges of the chimney which results in additional protection against damaging moisture. This cap is also wider which allows it to push water further away from the chimney. You can find these caps designed for both single-flue and multi-flue chimneys, and they offer a simple installation process.

4. Specialty Caps

Specialty caps are perfect for chimneys with a unique build. They are specially designed with individual chimneys in mind. These caps often offer specific functionalities to enhance protection for the chimney. For example:

  • heavy rain beating down on a roof with trees in the backgroundWind-resistant caps: These caps are designed to further prevent downdrafts caused by strong winds by redirecting airflow. This is important for your chimney to be able to allow smoke to rise up and out like it should.
  • Spark arrestor caps: These caps are a great choice for homes or cabins that are built in locations that are prone to wildfires. Their design minimizes the chance of sparks from the inside rising up and out with the smoke and then landing on flammable roofing materials.
  • Draft-increasing caps: Sometimes the design of a chimney doesn’t allow it to vent smoke and fumes as well as it should. These caps create a vacuum effect within the chimney which draws the smoke and fumes up and out at a higher volume.
  • Decorative caps: Decorative caps provide homeowners with special designs to match the aesthetics of their home. While still fully functional, they may be formed into various shapes and sizes, as well as use different materials to compliment the look and feel of the surrounding architecture.

5. Full-Coverage Caps/Covers

Full-coverage caps are also known as chase covers and they are built to fully cover the chimney in its entirety, so as to provide the maximum protection possible. They are most often installed over prefabricated or factory built chimneys in order to fully keep out moisture, animals, and downdrafts. These caps/covers almost provide the best value to homeowners, as they provide comprehensive protection, look great, are easily installed, and last a long time.

Count On Our Experts Every Time

Lords Chimney offers you a team of experts who have a lot of experience helping people find the perfect chimney cap to provide protection for the chimney, keep the home dry and warm, and look great – all at the same time.

Call us today or book with us online to learn how we can help you make sure your chimney is capped to perfection.

The Easiest Way to Keep Swifts, Animals & Water Out of Your Chimney

Sick of birds setting up camp in your flue? Are squirrels and other critters scrambling throughout your chimney? Stressed about water-relatedmasonry chimney with new crown masonry damages this fall? An easy way to resolve all of these worries is to invest in a high-quality, sturdy chimney cap and to have our team of professionals install it for you.

Not sure where your current cap stands or whether or not it’s actually being effective? We’re here to help. Learn more about chimney cap basics below, then reach out to our crew with any questions. We’re always eager to lend a hand and keep our customers safer, more knowledgeable, and completely prepared for it all.

Matching the Right Cap to the Right Chimney

Now, not all caps are created equal, and the type of cap you’ll need will depend on the type of fireplace you have. If things aren’t matched up appropriately, you’ll end up with a lot of issues, and you’ll invite all kinds of hazards and dangers into your home. Fortunately, we know all there is to know when it comes to fitting the best cap for your system, so you’ll be in good hands when you hire our crew for the job!

The biggest thing to remember is that, no matter what type of chimney or fireplace you’re using, a cap is always a must-have component. Without one in place, those birds and woodland creatures will have easy access to your home, and you’ll find yourself with excessive water damage and debris build-up, too.

If a bad storm blew your cap off or if yours seems damaged or misplaced, please don’t hesitate to call us in. We would be happy to look things over and see where you stand, then suggest further services that are best suited to your needs.

How Do I Know I Have the Wrong Cap?

If you have water coming into your home, or if you’re experiencing clogs, then that’s a clear indicator that your cap may need some adjustments. Other common problems we see are issues with the screening. Every chimney needs the right amount of screening, as well as the right type of screening, and without it, your chimney won’t be able to perform properly.

Usually these problems occur when chimney experts are not the ones hired to handle the task of keeping pests out of the chimney. Now, pest control professionals definitely know how to keep pests out of the home, but when it comes to chimneys they often get it wrong.

Essentially, if your screen is prone to experience build-up or if it lays flat, you’ll end up with issues. In both of these cases, nesting materials will block air, and you’ll have smoke backing into your home before you know it.

And while roofers offer some effective temporary fixes, most won’t do much for you long-term. We’ve even seen some take off the right cap and replace it with something less effective! Not good. In the end, hiring a CSIA certified pro is always the best route to take.

Is a Full-Coverage Cap Worth the Expense?

Now, as long as homeowners have some type of cap (whether that be single-flue, an umbrella type, or something else), we’re happy. That being said, you may find yourself replacing the less expensive, simpler models more often, and they aren’t always as effective as covering all of your bases (i.e. preventing animal entry, blocking out debris, stopping water damage, etc.).

The best route is always going to be investing in a full-coverage cap that keeps anything and everything that’s harmful away from your structure. It’s best for the design of the chimney, and it will save you money over time, both on repair/replacement costs and on damages that could occur throughout the system.

Should I Be Worried About Chimney Swifts?

Now, one of the animals we worry most about in terms of your chimney is the chimney swift. These small birds may seem like nothing to stress about (especially compared to raccoons, bats, and other bigger critters), but the truth is that removing them isn’t as simple as you might think.

You see, chimney swifts are protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, so once they establish themselves in your chimney, we can’t legally remove them. They’ll have to stay put until they leave on their own, after which we can remove their nests, so you aren’t left with any fire hazards.

And don’t think you’re off the hook once they’re gone! Once they’re done migrating, they’ll want to come right back to the same place they left, so preventing their entry is essential. That’s where an effective cap comes into play. Let us ensure you’re set up right, so you don’t have to deal with the hassle.

Our Qualified Techs are Ready to Serve

You won’t find a team in the Houston area that is more knowledgeable than ours. We have the experience, training, and expertise to ensure all of your chimney-related needs are addressed before your holiday season really takes off. We’d be happy to help you out soon, so please reach out now!