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Serving the Greater Houston Metro and surrounding areas for over 19 years. With over 35,000 satisfied customers, American Fireplace Inc. has over 50 years combined experience!

What Causes Your Chimney to Leak and What to Do About It?


There are many causes for your leaky chimney which determine which solution will get the best results.  Because of their positioning on the roof, rain falls directly on chimneys that don’t have a chimney cap.  Chimney covers also keep out animals such as birds, raccoons etc… from getting caught in them when they are seeking shelter from the elements.  Not only does it keep the rain out, but it also keeps birds, small animals, and leaves and branches out as well.

Another reason that a chimney will leak is due to a cracked chimney crown which is the cement surface located on top of the chimney.  Serving the same purpose as the chimney cap, the chimney crown is built to stop the rain and snow from just falling in around the tiles.  It is very common for cracks to appear as the chimney gets older.  If not fixed immediately, water will infiltrate the cracks over time.

If you live in an area which experiences seasonal temperature changes your chimney will be subject to even more physical stress on its masonry and mortar joints.  Because water freezes and thaws in the cracks over the winter over the year’s small cracks have a tendency to increase in size.  A crown coating material can be applied that will waterproof your chimney and preventing cracks from forming in the first place.

Chimney leaks can also be caused by a combination of incorrectly sized liners mixing with gas fumes causing condensation to drip down the chimney.  Because the gas fumes in the fireplace burn at a very low temperature and contain moisture, chimneys have a tendency to leak from the inside. The problem can be remedied with a correctly sized chimney liner.

Another source of water infiltration in your chimney can be found in the flashing which is a piece of aluminum that is installed at the base of the chimney and keeps water from entering the chimney.  Tar was commonly used in the past to seal the flashing and the brick which tends to erode in over time.  These days there are more durable sealants that have been specially formulated to withstand the elements and have a longer life expectancy.

Finally, in many cases leaks may start in another area of the home such as the roof and find their way to the chimney.  Whether it might be a leak that enters through the attic vent and drips to the floor or makes its way across the roof’s trusses to the chimney you might have to have a roofing specialist examine the roof to determine the problem.  While none of us like to deal with the additional costs that dealing with this issue would require, a professional roofing contractor has extensive experience in this area.

American Fireplace Inc. chimney cleaning and residential air duct cleaning services. For more than 20 years, it has served customers in Houston, Texas (TX) and the surrounding areas including Beaumont, Brenham, College Station, Galveston, Katy, Kingwood, Lake Jackson, Woodlands, Richmond, Spring and Sugarland.  American Fireplace Inc., We Care about Your Air!

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