Here’s What You Need to Know About Chimney Waterproofing
It’s a known fact that masonry structures, including chimneys, will sustain damage after long-term contact with water from rain and snow. The damage can cost thousands of dollars to fix. Chimney waterproofing is one way to prevent this. National Chimney Cleaners of Fairfield County, CT, and Morris County, NJ, would like to tell you a few things about chimney waterproofing that you may not know.
What is chimney waterproofing?
Waterproofing a chimney involves adding a special sealant to all parts of the exterior masonry. For years, we’ve recommended a sealant produced by ChimneySaver, a leader in chimney protection. Here are some highlights of this excellent sealant:
• Keeps water out of cracks in the bricks and decayed areas of mortar
• Includes a vapor-permeable layer that allows naturally occurring moisture to escape and not build up against the chimney surface
• Is basically invisible and won’t make the bricks shiny
• Stops the damage done by freeze-thaw cycles
• Meets all federal volatile organic compound (VOC) regulations
• Carries a 10-year warranty
How water damages a chimney
Every chimney repair technician will tell you that water and chimneys do not mix. All kinds of problems can happen when water is allowed to penetrate a chimney’s bricks and mortar. Although quality bricks are strong and long-lasting, they won’t last forever. Cracks are bound to appear at one point. Mortar, not as strong as bricks, will begin to crumble eventually. Finally, bricks are porous and provide the perfect surface for water intrusion. Masonry damaged by old age, lightning, hail, earthquakes or other events will lead to serious trouble.
Brick decay: Water inside bricks will start a natural cycle of decay and deterioration, making the bricks weak and vulnerable.
Freeze-thaw damage: In Connecticut and New Jersey, our brutal winters produce more than enough cold to freeze water inside bricks and make it expand and cause serious damage.
Leaning chimney or chimney collapse: A severely compromised chimney can begin to lean to one side. With enough brick damage, it can fall like a house of cards.
Interior chimney damage: If water is allowed to move into the interior spaces of a chimney, it can lead to:
• Damage to the chimney liner
• Fire in areas of the home near the damaged chimney
• Water damage to home building materials near the chimney
• The release of smoke and deadly carbon monoxide into the home
• Widespread mold growth in areas you can’t see
• Offensive, musty odors moving into the house
“A stitch in time saves nine”
The old saying “a stitch in time saves nine” applies perfectly to chimney waterproofing. The process is fairly simple for a chimney technician, and it’s not very expensive. Having this work done “in time” can save you many thousands of dollars on major chimney repairs down the line.
If it’s been more than five years since your chimney was last waterproofed, or if it’s never been waterproofed, now is the time to call National Chimney Cleaners. We’ll come out, inspect your chimney and then properly apply a ChimneySaver sealant to keep water away from your chimney and prevent the problems outlined above.
Speak with a chimney expert today by calling (800) 631-6177 or reaching out with our simple contact form.