Why You Should Inspect Your Chimney Flashing
Unfortunately, many homeowners don’t realize that they have a water leak until it’s too late and damaged chimney flashing may be to blame. With direct exposure to the environment and weather conditions, it’s not uncommon for the flashing material around the chimney to become damaged necessitating its repair or replacement.
Although problems with chimney flashing are more common with older homes, any home is susceptible. Sometimes work by inexperienced chimney or roofing contractors improperly install flashing or use inferior materials.
So, what is chimney flashing anyway?
Chimney flashing consists of sheets of metal and other waterproof materials that are wrapped around the chimney, usually in an L-shape, to seals any gaps at the joint between the chimney and the roof. This prevents moisture from seeping in to your home from these joints. In fact, this area where the chimney intersects your roof is vulnerable to leaks from a build-up of leaves, rainwater and ice on the roof that puts pressure on these joints. Also, humidity, heat and temperature fluctuations can also damage flashing. And when the flashing material is damaged or begins to separate water can leak through tiny gaps in the joints that may be as small as a pin hole.
Why chimney flashing is vital for protecting your home
While water is necessary for survival, it is the mortal enemy for most construction materials. The problem with most water leaks is that they start out very small. It’s not until you begin to spot stains on your ceiling or portions of your chimney and roof separating from your home that the leak becomes more noticeable. Also, water leaks never correct themselves. They continue to grow and can cause thousands of dollars in damage to your home.
Water that gets in through the chimney and roof joints can cause an accelerated deterioration of the flue. The bricks and mortar inside the chimney can also crack, which could eventually lead to a complete collapse of the chimney and roof. Also, as water continues to leak it can cause any structural wood to rot, as well as damage insulation materials, and rust metal pipes.
Get an annual chimney inspection
The chimney is critical to maintaining the integrity of your home, and it needs to be maintained just like everything else. And the first step to ensuring the integrity of your chimney flashing is to make sure you have an annual chimney inspection by certified specialists. Chimney Solutions is a member of the National Fireplace Institute (NFI) and its certified specialists are trained to provide complete chimney inspections and repairs. Inspecting the flashing is part of their level I chimney inspection.
Properly maintaining your chimney in good working condition can help you maintain the value of your greatest investment, your home. Contact Chimney Specialists to schedule an annual chimney inspection today!