Summer may not be the time that you notice a drop in efficiency, but while you’re hanging around outside more and more, you may notice some changes in your masonry. Deterioration of the chimney is caused from general wear and tear and can worsen due to spring rains. During the summer, you may start to notice that even minor damage that will become a major problem when cold weather arrives. It’s important to assess and repair masonry damage now so that it doesn’t lead to worse damage later.
Making repairs in the summer means that your chimney will be restored to full function and ready for your first fire this fall. When your chimney is inspected in the summer months, it leaves enough time for repairs to be made before fall arrives. These necessary maintenance appointments including chimney sweeps and inspections keep chimneys working safely and efficiently according to the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). When you hire a certified chimney sweep company to take care of your comprehensive chimney needs, masonry deterioration will be caught before serious damage or injury occurs. If you haven’t scheduled an appointment with a professional since you’ve had your home, fireplace, or in the last 12 months, now is the time to call.
Avoid Winter Damage
Masonry damage can look like minor cracks, staining, and flaking or it can be serious issues such as leaning, gaps, and falling or crumbling bricks. Minor damage now may mean serious damage by the end of the winter. Winter damage is quite common in our service area of North, Northwest, and Western Chicago. Regular wear and tear can cause minor damage to the masonry, and the freeze/thaw cycle that occurs each winter can lead to serious masonry and structural damage.
The freeze/thaw cycle occurs when water enters a space in the masonry, such as a crack or gap. The water freezes when the temperature drops, expanding, and damaging the masonry. As the chimney warms up again, the water melts, and moves further into the damaged masonry. This process repeats itself all winter long, until the damage is substantial. This type of damage can be prevented when masonry issues are caught and corrected before cool weather hits.
Common Masonry Damage
Spalling – When the brick and mortar begins to crack, flake, crumble, and fall away. Spalling may leave gaps in the masonry and expose the liner.
Chimney Leaks – Leaks can occur due to masonry damage, missing or damaged parts such as flashing and caps, and storm damage.
Repair: Installations, inspection, and waterproofing
Crown Damage – The crown can become cracked and damaged by sun and weather exposure.
Repair: Crown seal, repair, or replacement.
Schedule your masonry assessment and repair today so that you can avoid the fall rush, the time between October and January when chimney professionals are busy. At RMR, we offer all services year-round. Now is the time to prepare your chimney for winter.
Call 847-290-1883 to speak with a chimney expert today.