Our Company Blog
If you have a masonry chimney, then you likely know how damaging water can be! Brickwork is quite absorbent, so it doesn’t take long for moisture to get sucked in. Quickly after entry, it causes all types of decay and deterioration. As your masonry breaks down, your risk of a collapse increases. You don’t want to put your family and home in danger!
Along with this, you’ll notice countless issues that make fireplace use a lot more dangerous and challenging. For instance, clogs tend to occur more when water damage is present, meaning airflow will be obstructed. This leaves you with a smoky living room and potential exposure to harmful and potentially deadly fumes.
Not to mention, the various parts of your chimney’s structure will face damage such as rust, rot, mold buildup, cracks, holes, and more. You don’t want to shell out a lot of dough in repair and replacement costs! All this and more is why it is so important to have leaks and water problems resolved as quickly as possible. Luckily, the CSIA certified team at Lords Chimney have everything you need to run a safer and more efficient appliance. Save yourself some stress by depending on us from the very start!
Ask Us About Your Free Consultation Today
If you have water leaks in your fireplace, we’re more than happy to come check things out, free of charge. We’ll find the source of the leak, then advise you on the next logical steps for getting things resolved as quickly as possible. Between waterproofing, flashing repair, chimney cap installation, crown rebuilds, and more, there are countless options out there for resolving leaks and preventing further damage down the line. Based on your setup, we’ll figure out which techniques would be best for you. We’ll take care of you in no time!
Keep Up With Your Annual Inspections
Ensuring your chimney holds up over time doesn’t have to be a stressful process. By working with Lords Chimney throughout the year and by keeping up with annual inspections and regular sweepings, you’ll see the long-lasting results you deserve, guaranteed, and you’ll avoid nasty leaks in the future. The CSIA states that annual inspections are a key component in keeping your structure stronger throughout time. Trust our certified staff for all your chimney needs!
Spotting buildup and necessary repair work early is always a more cost-effective and less time-consuming way to address your chimney and fireplace maintenance. No matter what issues may be present, we’ll advise you on the best steps to take, so you have smooth burning seasons every fall. The holidays aren’t the same without a crackling fire to set the mood, so be sure to get us in now, so you know you’re good to go down the line! We’re ready for your call!
At Lords Chimney we want you to be able to enjoy countless evening in front of your cozy hearth… Unfortunately, many homeowners go to light a fire, only to face an endless line of problems!
A major reason you may be experiencing inefficiency in your fireplace is due to masonry damage. There are lots of ways your brickwork can suffer, but here are some of the more common issues.
Brick spalling is when the bricks in your chimney deteriorate enough that they start to fall out. Water damage is the main culprit behind this type of damage. When your brick and mortar are able to absorb moisture, you wind up facing a long list of issues throughout time. The water freezes when temps drop, causing everything to expand. Once things thaw out in spring and summer, the brick settles and creates a lot of pressure on your chimney as a whole.
If bad weather, excess moisture, and other forms of wear and tear have taken a toll on your brickwork, the staff at Lords Chimney can help! We are able to replace the bricks with pieces that blend with your current chimney model. They will fit in securely, so you can kiss structural issues good-bye! We also provide waterproofing options, so your masonry stays protected all year long.
Water damage also leads to crumbling mortar. The more it breaks down, the easier it is for water to get in, thus triggering a vicious cycle! Water is very bad for the mortar in your chimney and can lead to time-consuming and costly damages.
Let us repair your mortar joints with our tuckpointing service! We can fix you up right, leaving you with a strong chimney that will easily stand firm no matter the weather outside. Once we are finished, your chimney will look like new and work great. Why wait? Call on the staff at Lords Chimney today.
Cracks & Leaking
Another common problem fireplace owners face is leaks. Once your masonry is damaged, you are much more susceptible to leaks, which then cause more issues down the line. Leaks lead to discoloration, rust, mold, nasty odors, and stains throughout your interior walls and ceilings. Don’t let an easy fix grow into a huge problem. Call us in right away!
On top of these, you could easily face countless other issues with your masonry. Clogs, deterioration, discoloration, rust and rotting are just some of the many reasons why you should have your chimney looked at as soon as possible! Address these issues right away, then take preventative action to stop more problems from occurring in the future. If something goes unresolved for too long, you may even face a settlement or collapse!
Keep your home and family out of harm’s way and call us in now before it is too late. We look forward to making your chimney great!
Whether it’s a musty or moldy smell, a soft drip-drip sound coming from the chimney, or a puddle of water at the bottom of the firebox, a leaky chimney is a problem that cannot be ignored. Left unrepaired, even minor chimney leaks can create major damage throughout your fireplace system.
Thankfully, leaky chimneys don’t have to be a chronic problem. Identifying the source of the water entry and fixing your leaky chimney as soon as possible can prevent serious water damage to your fireplace system or home.
What causes chimney leaks?
Chimneys are built to stand strong against the elements; however, there are still a number of points where water can work its way into the chimney system. The following are some of the most common causes of chimney leaks.
Chimney cap: The chimney cap protects the top of the chimney and keeps moisture, animals, and debris from falling into the chimney. A damaged chimney cap can allow water into the flue, causing damage throughout the fireplace and chimney structure.
Chimney crown: Often confused with the chimney cap, the chimney crown is a mortar slab that seals the top of the chimney. Chimney crowns should have small overhangs as well as be built with slightly sloped edges to prevent water from pooling on the top. Chimney crowns can deteriorate over time due to prolonged exposure to the elements; this creates cracks that allow moisture into the chimney.
Flashing: Flashing is the watertight metal strips that seals the joint between the chimney and the roof. Over time, flashing can lose its seal due to overexposure to the elements; flashing can also be damaged by storms or animals.
Masonry damage: Without regular maintenance, bricks and mortar can begin to deteriorate over time. The freeze thaw process – which causes water in bricks to freeze and expand – is the most common cause of water damage to masonry.
Fixing a leaky chimney
When it comes to fixing a leaky chimney, the most important step is to find and repair the cause of the chimney leak. Repairing the water damage without first removing the cause of the chimney leak will only lead to recurrent water problems. By uncovering the root cause of the chimney leak, you can rest assured that the water damage will not return once the necessary repairs have been made.
For chimneys with damaged masonry, tuckpointing may be used to repair or replace damaged bricks and mortar. During the tuckpointing process, small areas of damaged masonry are carefully removed before the new bricks and mortar are put in; this can help strengthen the chimney structure and help avoid the costs of rebuilding the entire chimney.
Another great way to prevent chimney leaks and water damage is by having your chimney waterproofed. Professionally waterproofing a chimney can seal and protect the masonry from water damage while still allowing the bricks to retain their semi-porous nature.
If you have a leaky chimney, trust the experts at Lords Chimney to repair it. Contact us today to schedule an appointment so we can help resolve your chimney leaks!
When stains appear on the sides of a chimney, many homeowners falsely assume it is a natural part of an aging chimney. Unfortunately, chimney discoloration is often more than just a simple eyesore. Chimney stains and discoloration may indicate the presence of damage or other problems. The following are five of the most common kinds – and causes – of chimney discoloration.
Black stains on interior masonry are caused by soot buildup. Soot staining is often the sign of a chimney that has not been properly cleaned or maintained. Likewise, soot stains can also be caused by burning the wrong materials, such as green wood or paper and cardboard.
While soot stains are relatively common on older masonry chimneys, gas fireplaces should never have soot stains. Soot stains, especially those around the top of the chimney, indicate that there is a problem with the gas fireplace and the fuel is not burning correctly; soot staining on gas fireplaces can sometimes indicate a carbon monoxide leak.
Brown and black staining around the chimney cap or down the sides of the chimney structure is one of the most common kinds of chimney stains. While most homeowners assume this kind of discoloration is simply staining from soot, it is typically caused by excessive creosote buildup in the flue. If a chimney is not regularly swept, creosote can build up to the point where runoff stains the top and sides of the chimney. Because creosote staining is so similar to soot staining, a chimney sweep may be needed to evaluate the difference between the two.
Green or dark green discoloration on a chimney is caused by the growth of mold and algae. This kind of green staining is most commonly seen in areas where water directly flows. Chimneys without a lip on the chimney crown may be particularly susceptible to algae or mold growth as the water travels over the masonry.
Red and brown rust stains are almost exclusively seen with prefabricated or metal chimneys. Because factory build chimneys have metal chase covers, they are prone to rusting. When this occurs, dark brown, red, and orange rust stains will begin to streak down the sides of the chimney chase. If rust staining is noticed, the chimney should be inspected immediately for signs of water damage caused by a chimney leak.
White stains on masonry structures are known as efflorescence. As water in the brick evaporates, it leaves behind mineral salt which then creates powdery white or crystalline discolorations on the masonry of the chimney. Exterior efflorescence is usually harmless and caused by ground or rain water. However, interior efflorescence may indicate the presence of a chimney leak.
Chimney stains do more than just affect your home’s curb appeal; they can also indicate the presence of a serious chimney problem. Schedule an appointment with Lords Chimney today to find out if your chimney discoloration is cosmetic or caused by something more serious.
A smelly chimney can do more than just create an unpleasant odor in your home; it is often the sign of a much more serious chimney issues. Unfortunately, chimney odors rarely resolve themselves on their own and often need professionals to find and fix the underlying cause of the chimney odor.
Our trained technicians at Lord’s Chimney are experts at troubleshooting smelly chimneys. We can uncover the cause of your chimney odor and get you back to enjoying your fireplace!
Causes of Chimney Odor
There are a number of common causes for smelly chimneys. Finding the cause of your chimney odor can help fix the problem and keep it from coming back. The following are a few of the causes of chimney odor.
Animal entry: Animals in the chimney system can create a whole host of chimney issues. In addition to damaging the chimney system, animals can create extremely unpleasant odors. For animals that are using the chimney as a nesting ground, food, droppings, or wet nesting materials can all create unpleasant odors. Likewise, if an animal becomes trapped and dies the decomposing body can create an unbearable smell, expose your family to bacteria and bugs, and affect your home’s air supply.
Creosote: Creosote is created by incomplete combustion, such as when logs smolder for a long period of time or a stove or fireplace is kept at a low temperature. In addition to being highly flammable, creosote can also create a strong odor. A dirty or smoky smell that gets worse during the summertime is often the result of creosote buildup. A thorough chimney sweeping can get rid of creosote and the odor it causes as well as make your fireplace safer to use!
Drafting: Wood fires are supposed to fill your home with a subtle smoky smell. However, if using your fireplace fills your home with an unpleasant burning smell or blows smoke back into the room you may have a drafting issue. Drafting issues are most commonly caused by improperly sized flues or error with usage. Many drafting problems can be easily resolved by resizing the flue, using only seasoned firewood, and ensuring that the damper remains open the entire time the fireplace is in use.
Mold: Undiagnosed or unrepaired chimney leaks often lead to mold or mildew growth in the chimney. This is also made worse by the presence of leaves, nesting materials, or other debris. Mold in the chimney can create extremely unpleasant odors that can affect the smell in the entire home. Left unremoved, mold growth can also impact the air quality as well as create breathing issues for those with asthma or other respiratory problems.
Chimney odor troubleshooting
Finding the source of a chimney odor can sometimes be challenging. At Lord’s Chimney, our highly trained technicians are experts at troubleshooting potential causes of chimney odor. Once the source of the odor is found, we can repair it as well as create a plan to prevent the odor from returning.
If you are dealing with a smelly chimney, don’t delay – contact the experts at Lord’s Chimney to have your smelly chimney repaired!