Reasons to Waterproof Your Chimney
Water is a chimney’s number one enemy. If you don’t stay up to date on maintenance and inspections, water damage gets out of control and can lead to brick spalling, failing mortar joints, chimney leaning, or complete collapse. This post looks at the types of damage water does to a chimney, the benefits of waterproofing, and why you should hire a professional for this service.
Why Water is Dangerous to Your Chimney
The average annual precipitation in Mercer County, NJ, is typically 46.8 inches, and snow covers the ground 29 days per year. That much rainfall, freezing, and thawing take a toll on chimneys. But how and what kind of damage does it do? Most chimneys are made from masonry materials like bricks, mortar, and concrete. Masonry materials like these are porous and absorb water like sponges. Once water seeps in, it causes a host of problems.
Spalling happens when the brick’s surface begins peeling away, popping out, or flaking off. It’s a sign of deterioration that, if left untreated, will worsen and lead to significant structural damage. Spalling happens when water seeps into the bricks, freezes, and thaws. This freeze/thaw cycle causes expansion and contraction, causing the bricks to crack leading to spalling.
Mold & Mildew
Another danger of persistent moisture seeping into your chimney is mold and mildew growth. Besides fire and water damage, the last thing a homeowner wants is a mold infestation. According to the Department of Health, “Exposure to a large number of mold spores may cause allergic symptoms such as watery eyes, runny nose, sneezing, coughing, wheezing, difficulty breathing, headache, and fatigue.”
If your fireplace has metal components, like a metal damper, water ingress can cause it to rust, making it harder to open and close and maintain an adequate draft. Moreover, if you have a metal chimney liner, constant exposure to water can cause it to wear out prematurely. As you can see, water is no friend to your chimney, so it’s wise to invest in annual inspections, repairs, and waterproofing.
Benefits of Waterproofing Your Chimney
Now that you know how harmful water is to your chimney, let’s consider the best reasons to waterproof it.
Prevent Water Damage
Naturally, the primary reason you should waterproof your chimney is to prevent damage and other problems when water seeps into your chimney and fireplace.
Extends Your Chimney’s Lifespan
Since water is the number one cause of chimney damage, it’s easy to see how constant exposure can cause your chimney to wear out and require repairs or a complete rebuild. Waterproofing stops moisture from getting and wreaking havoc, which can extend your chimney’s lifespan and need expensive repairs.
Increased Energy Efficiency
Maintaining your chimney through regular inspections and repairs helps keep the whole system running efficiently. An efficient fireplace and chimney can help lower your monthly energy bills.
Boosts Property Value
While it’s true that wood-burning fireplaces aren’t as popular with new home buyers as in the past, some people still prefer them over gas or electric options. If your chimney is in disrepair, it could affect the property value if you decide to sell it. Keeping your fireplace and chimney in good aesthetic and functional condition can help you maximize the resale value.
Why You Should Hire a Professional Chimney Sweep
So, you’re convinced about why it’s essential to waterproof your chimney, and maybe you’re considering doing it yourself. Well, here are a few reasons why you should leave it to a professional.
They Have the Experience & Expertise
Certified professionals have the training and experience to do the job correctly and spot potential problems that could become safety issues that you or an amateur might miss.
They Have Material Knowledge
Another advantage a professional chimney sweep has is their knowledge about materials and which products work best for a particular climate and weather conditions.
It’s Cost Effective
It might seem more expensive to hire a pro instead of doing it yourself, but eventually, it’s cheaper. Hiring a professional sweep means, there’s less chance of a mishap that could lead to expensive repairs down the road. Moreover, reputable chimney sweeps are licensed and insured for your protection and peace of mind.
Call the Pros at Mercer County Chimney Service
Whether you want your chimney waterproofed or need another service, like sweeping, inspection, or repairs, you can count on us.
We’re a locally owned full-service chimney and fireplace company with technicians certified by the Chimney Safety Institute of America and the National Fireplace Institute. Book your appointment today at 609-802-5288.