Why is My Chimney Leaking?
Water leaking through the chimney is a common problem, especially in older homes, that often catches many homeowners by surprise leading them to wonder why their chimney is leaking. There are a number of chimney problems that could sprout a leak and it can be difficult to find the source. But a chimney leak can develop into a potentially serious and costly issue and should not be ignored. Repairing leaks as soon as possible will prevent further damage to the chimney and ultimately your home.
Your chimney cap may be missing or damaged
Often, chimney leaks are due to a missing or damaged chimney cap. A chimney cap is a protective cover that helps prevent water, debris and small animals from entering the chimney through the flue. Depending on the number of heating appliances in your home, you may have more than one flue. Surprisingly, many homes do not have a chimney cap at all which leaves their ventilation system exposed to the outside elements.
Also, some homes are built with a cement cap which is easily damaged and deteriorates with age. So if your home either does not have a chimney cap or if the cap has been damaged it could be the source of the leak. There are several different appealing stainless steel and copper chimney cap styles to choose from and it is a very inexpensive fix for preventing chimney leaks.
There is damage to the chimney seal on the roof (flashing)
Sometimes structural issues develop where the chimney meets the roof. The exposed portion of the chimney above the roof is sealed with thin sheets of metal layers called flashing to prevent water leaking into the chimney from the roof. The entire flashing system is usually sealed with a strong polyurethane caulk. However, over time the seal can deteriorate which loosens the flashing allowing water to leak into the chimney. In some cases, the flashing may be faulty or damaged and needs to be repaired or replaced.
Your chimney crown is cracked
Another common source of chimney leaks is a crack in the crown. The chimney crown is built on top of most masonry chimneys to prevent water from leaking into the bricks. Chimney leaks can occur when the crown is damaged or begins to exhibit signs of deterioration. Its location above the roof exposes the crown to a variety of weather conditions. Also, in colder climates where the crown is exposed to freezing and thawing conditions, can lead to cracks in the mortar.
Many chimney leaks can be prevented with annual chimney inspections. During annual inspections, a certified chimney sweep inspects the structural integrity of the entire chimney system from the cap and crown to the firebox and fireplace. This will allow homeowners to address any discovered problem areas before they grow into more costly repairs. So, if it has been two or more years since your last inspection, contact us today to schedule a chimney inspection.
Guardian Chimney Sweep
Houston, Texas / Conroe, Texas
Houston: (713) 401-2011
Conroe: (936) 271-9781