Our Company Blog

Waterproofing & Your Chimney

When it comes to keeping your masonry in tip-top shape, investing in a few forms of preventative maintenance can go a long way. Things like chimney caps, chimney crowns, flashing, and more all play a big role in protecting your structure from harmful water damage, and these effective and affordable solutions typically wind up saving homeowners hundreds (sometimes thousands) in repair work.

One thing the crew here at Lords Chimney urges all of our customers to invest in is waterproofing services. Not familiar with how this process works or what it entails? We’ve got you covered! Get the facts below, then reach out to our team with any questions. We are always happy to help.

What Is Waterproofing?chimney near lake in fog

Waterproofing is the process of covering your brickwork and mortar with a light, vapor permeable seal. This coating protects your masonry from rain, sleet, snow, and other forms of moisture without affecting the look or aesthetic of your structure. The products that are used by professional sweeps are known for allowing any pre-absorbed moisture the chance to effectively escape your structure, as well, ensuring things will not continue breaking down from the inside.

Why Is Waterproofing Important?

Now, what many homeowners fail to realize is their strong, sturdy brickwork is actually quite absorbent. The more exposure your masonry has to rains and harsh weather, the more it will break down, meaning you’ll be investing in some expensive professional rebuilding work before you know it. Waterproofing now will save you loads of money down the line!

What kind of damages does waterproofing trigger? Homeowners have noted countless issues from too much water exposure ranging from discolored brickwork to mold growth to rust streaks and more. Not only with it threaten the structural integrity of your setup, but it will make it look much less attractive, as well.

A waterproofed structure will also ensure your brickwork and mortar won’t form holes, gaps, and openings through which smoke, carbon monoxide, heat, and flames can escape into your home. All of these can lead to injury or health issues, and they can cause damage throughout your property, as well.

Finally, waterproofing helps homeowners avoid disasters, such as settlements or collapses. If your chimney starts to crumble and weaken, it may only be a matter of time before it falls down completely, putting your entire home and family members at significant risk. A simple call to our team of experts can ensure you are set up right with the high-quality services you deserve. Let’s get started today!

How Often Should I Invest In This Service?

How often do you need to schedule waterproofing services? Well, it often depends on the products that are being used, but most will need to be reapplied every 5 – 10 years. Here at Lords Chimney, we use ChimneySaver, which comes with a 10 year warranty, so you’ll be good to go for the long haul!

That being said, make sure you invest in care from a qualified technician or you may not get the results you are hoping for. Tackling this as a do-it-yourself job could result in you not getting the most from the products you invest in, and your chimney will suffer as a result.

All About ChimneySaver

Like we said, ChimneySaver comes with a 10 year warranty, but it has many other qualities that make it a top choice for certified sweeps all throughout the nation. This company excels when it comes to setting the standard for all types of chimney products, and everything they sell undergoes testing and research to ensure it really performs out in the field. Chimney companies all over the country trust it year after year because it really delivers!

Help! My Chimney Is Already Leaking!

Is your chimney already experiencing leaks and water-related damages? Well, these are issues you will obviously need to have addressed before applying any waterproofing agents. If your metal components are rusting, if you see or hear water in your chimney, or if you’ve noticed some deterioration throughout your flue, then the time to call in the experts is now!

If you aren’t sure where you stand, the best thing to do is to schedule a chimney inspection. A CSIA certified sweep will have the knowledge, experience, and tools to do a thorough overview and can recommend further services based upon their findings. With the holidays coming up quick, now is a great time to get this maintenance scheduled.

Thanks to services like tuckpointing, crown repair, brick replacement, and more, you’ll have your system working as efficiently and as safely as possible in no time!

Can Lords Chimney Help Me?

So, what can the Lords Chimney team do to resolve problems with leaks and water damage throughout the Houston area? First things first, we are certified to perform all levels of chimney inspections, so you can count on us no matter what state your chimney is in. Then, we can sweep and repair your unit as necessary.

After we’ve got your structure looking and functioning like new again, we can apply preventative measures to keep it protected, including waterproofing services. You deserve peace of mind in the months ahead, and we’re here to provide it. Reach out now, and we can get something scheduled!

Dealing With Chimney Leaks

Nothing is better than a cozy evening in by the fireplace, but leaks and other damages can put a damper on those plans in a hurry. If you’re dealing with a leaky chimney, don’t let it get you down… Instead, call on the CSIA certified team at Lords Chimney! Get what you deserve from a chimney company by counting on us for it all!

Avoiding The Issue

When it comes to a leaky chimney, avoiding the issue is never the route to take. It doesn’t take long for water damage to go from bad to worse, and you could eventually face a chimney settlement or collapse, should you neglect to invest in repairs. Leaks and water damage lead to deterioration and clogs, and using your chimney in light of these damages will put your home and family at some serious risk.

Along with this, your flashing will rust, your woodwork will rot, and cracks, holes, and decay will show up throughout your system. If you want to ensure your chimney stays in good health for years to come, addressing leaks as soon as possible is the way to go.

Luckily, the team at Lords Chimney can help you out! We have the tools and expertise necessary for repairing leaks and keeping them away for good. Count on our expert staff to guarantee you get the fantastic results you deserve!

Solutions For You

There are lots of ways to prevent leaks from occurring again in the future, but first we’ll have to make sure your chimney is fixed up right. We can repair cracks, restore brickwork, patch up flashing, and address any damage to your cap or crown. If your chimney parts are beyond repair and need to be replaced, we can take care of that, too! Count on us to handle it all, so you know you’re good to go from the very beginning.

Next, we’ll make sure you’re set up with everything you need to keep water away for good. You’ll need a proper working chimney cap and chimney crown in place, and you’ll definitely want flashing installed, too. Next, you’ll need to ensure your brickwork stays protected through anything! That’s where waterproofing comes in.

When you invest in our waterproofing services, you can rest easy knowing your brickwork won’t be able to absorb harmful moisture down the line. We use ChimneySaver, which is a protective sealant that blocks water from entering your chimney’s brickwork and mortar. At the same time, it allows your chimney the ability to vent out necessary fumes, vapors, and moisture that was already there.

When it comes to waterproofing, you don’t want to skimp. Basic sealers and paints won’t do an effective job, meaning you’ll waste time and money on nothing. Invest in our services now, so you get the long-lasting results you deserve!

Call Us Today!

If you’re experiencing leaks, then give us a call right away. Getting the problem addressed fast is the most cost-effective option, and it’ll save you lots of time and stress down the line, too. Book your appointment today, so we can get started soon!

Troubleshooting A Smelly Chimney

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!

troubleshooting-smelly-chimney-image-houston-tx-lords-chimney

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!

Water Damage and Your Chimney

While a faint dripping sound or a little dampness in the firebox after it rains might not seem like a big deal, these seemingly minor issues can cause major problems if left untreated. Because chimneys are constantly exposed to the elements, including rain, ice, and snow, they sometimes deteriorate at a higher rate than the masonry in the rest of a fireplace system. Fortunately, almost all water-related issues are entirely preventable through proper upkeep and maintenance of the chimney structure.

chimney-water-damage-houston-tx-lords-chimney

How is the water getting in?

Although a chimney might seem like a straightforward structure, there are actually many different parts that work together to prevent water from entering the fireplace. Because of this, it is important to have any leaks evaluated by a professional who can determine the exact cause of the water entry. With the latest technology, including closed-circuit cameras, the experts at Lords Chimney can find and repair any leaks.

While chimney leaks may be caused by a number of different issues, below are some of the most common causes of water entry.

Masonry damage: Because both bricks and mortar are naturally porous, they absorb a certain amount of moisture. This absorption, combined with the expanding and contracting caused by changing temperatures, can lead to the accelerated deterioration of a masonry chimney. Left unrepaired, what started out as small cracks may progress to the point of bricks falling off and even damage to the chimney liner itself.

Chimney cap: Because they are not visible without being on the roof, chimney cap damage is often not found until an annual sweep or inspection is performed. In addition to keeping water out of the chimney and fireplace, chimney caps also prevent squirrels, birds, raccoons, and other animals from entering and nesting in the chimney.

Flashing: Flashing is the metal band that protects the gap where your roof and chimney meet. While it is meant to create a watertight seal, it can be damaged by nail holes, falling debris, and exposure to the elements.

How to prevent water damage

The best way to protect your home, chimney, and fireplace against water damage is to take the proactive steps to prevent it. One of the most beneficial and long-lasting repairs a homeowner can have done is to have a waterproofing solution applied to their masonry. These specially designed compounds are intended to still allow harmful gasses out without letting moisture in.

An annual chimney cleaning and inspection is another way to prevent small, easily-fixable problems from turning into costly repairs. The Chimney Safety Institute of America recommends “Chimneys, fireplaces, and vents shall be inspected at least once a year for soundness, freedom from deposits, and correct clearances. Cleaning, maintenance, and repairs shall be done if necessary.”

By spotting a problem early, it can be repaired before it causes major damage to the chimney structure or home. The expert technicians at Lords Chimney are highly skilled and knowledgeable professionals who have been trained to identify the source of a leak as well as to repair it. Call them today to schedule an appointment to discover the root cause of your leaky chimney or to ensure that water damage never happens.

3 Ways Negligence Ruins Your Chimney

Many serious problems can arise just because you fail give your chimney the care it requires. Don't neglect you chimney!

Many serious chimney-related problems arise due to negligence. Give your chimney the care it deserves.

A fireplace and chimney are creature comforts for many homeowners. Unfortunately, not every homeowner takes chimney maintenance as seriously as they should. Your chimney requires special care and attention to ensure it remains clear of debris and functions properly. Without an annual inspection, your fireplace and/or chimney can quickly become dangerous—even deadly.

Is a little creosote buildup really that bad?

In short, yes. According to the NFPA, the second leading cause of house fires is heating equipment; fireplaces, chimneys and wood stoves cause two-thirds of those house fires. Most of the afore-mentioned fires are the result of creosote. Sadly, most are preventable with regular inspections and maintenance.

If allowed to accumulate in large enough quantities, creosote can severely limit the flow of deadly combustion gases when you’re burning wood. One of these gases—carbon monoxide (CO)—is responsible for killing more than 200 people each year and sends more than 10,000 to hospital emergency rooms for treatment.

You can prevent your home and everyone in it from being included in these statistics by simply scheduling routine chimney inspections and sweepings to catch dangerous creosote before it has the opportunity to catch you.

So what if my bricks are spalling and the mortar is missing!

The main purpose of a chimney is to vent the products of combustion from your home. That function is crucial. A well-structured chimney and flue are designed to offer protection to your family and home from these deadly combustion byproducts.

It’s not uncommon for a masonry chimney to be in need of repair. If left uncorrected, a few minor issues can quickly become huge problems in no time at all. Broken or spalled bricks and deteriorated mortar joints are definite signs that your chimney may need repair, as they create several hazards—improper venting of combustion gases and potential structural collapse. Both hazards could prove to be fatal.

What harm is a little water going to do?

Failing to waterproof your chimney could lead to a multitude of problems. By waterproofing your chimney, you enable it to repel up to 99.9% of the water that would otherwise penetrate the brick and/or other materials. Waterproofing is a true preventative measure that can add years to your chimney’s life.

Because it’s not a requirement, many homeowners deprioritize it; this is a big mistake! There are many issues that can develop as a result of water being on and getting in to your chimney, and, as such, swift and immediate action should be taken to ensure that you’re not faced with unnecessary and avoidable repairs bills.

Unless you’re just looking for a reason to get rid of your chimney, there really is no excuse for neglecting it. It’s time to have an experienced technician evaluate the condition of your fireplace and chimney, get them repaired if necessary, and have your chimney coated with a waterproofing product. If you live in the greater Houston area and are looking for a pleasant service experience and the knowledge that your job was done correctly, give Lords Chimney a call at 281-497-4000, or click here to request an appointment online! We look forward to showing you a level of professionalism and quality that you haven’t seen in a service provider!