White, Black, Red, Green, and Brown: Identifying Staining on Chimneys
Is your chimney discolored or stained? If so, chimney services are needed. There are several reasons for chimney staining, and the color of the chimney stain is an indication of what the cause is or may be. Whether you’ve identified white, black, red, green, or brown staining on your chimney, something is wrong and chimney services are needed.
White Stains on Chimneys
A close look at white stains on chimneys reveals that the stains are powdery, soft, fluffy, or crystalline in nature. These white stains are caused by efflorescence, and they are evidence that moisture is in your masonry system.
What is Efflorescence?
Efflorescence is mineral salt left behind on chimney exteriors when water has evaporated. Not all masonry will show staining after water has entered the brick masonry. There are certain conditions which must exist for efflorescence to occur, and they are:
- The masonry must contain water-soluble salts;
- Enough water must be in the masonry to mix with the salts; and
- There must be a path for the salts to travel through to the outside of the bricks.
Water in masonry leads to continued deterioration. A full or partial masonry rebuild is necessary on a chimney with signs of efflorescence.
Black Stains on Chimneys
A chimney with black stains on the exterior provides a clue as to what’s inside the chimney flue. Excess creosote and soot in a flue from wood fires can easily begin to show on the outside. When chimney cleaning is completely neglected, highly flammable creosote builds up until the flue is blocked, as well. Chimney obstructions cause toxic gases to enter the home, and excess creosote increases the chances of a hazardous chimney fire. When black discoloration can be seen on a chimney, it is a crystal-clear sign that professional chimney sweep services are needed. The trained, licensed, and experienced chimney sweeps at Mercer County Chimney Services in New Jersey are highly qualified to handle masonry work as well as all chimney services.
If you have a gas-fueled appliance, soot staining can appear around the flue and the appliance. This soot buildup is a sign that there is danger caused by fatal carbon monoxide production inside the home. The situation is dangerous and calls for immediate action. Call the trusted chimney experts at Mercer County Chimney Services if you live in New Jersey.
Green Stains on the Chimney
Algae and/or mold are the possible causes of green stains on chimneys. The occurrence is somewhat rare because chimneys are built to keep moisture out. Moisture causes all sorts of damage and it attracts the growth of algae as well as mold. If a chimney sweep finds the presence of mold on a chimney exterior, the chimney flue should also be checked for the presence of mold. A toxic substance, mold can create health issues and should always be immediately and carefully removed.
Red Stains on the Chimney
Chimney caps are essential appliances that help to protect chimneys from moisture and serve other helpful functions, but they eventually rust, depending on the type of material they are made with. Aluminum and galvanized steel chimney caps tend to rust, for example, while stainless-steel and copper chimney caps will not rust. If there is red staining on your chimney, contact the Mercer County chimney experts for the installation of a new chimney cap and for the safe removal of the stains.
Brown Stains on the Chimney
Chimney stains caused by rust sometimes appear to be browner than red. In addition, efflorescence is not always white; sometimes brown or yellow efflorescence occurs. The color is determined by the type of mineral salts the moisture mixes with.
For chimney services, it is important to call on certified experts with the training needed to get jobs done right. If you have chimney staining or other chimney issues or if you need to schedule a chimney cleaning and inspection, call Mercer County Chimney Sweeps today at 609-802-5288.