Troubleshooting Chimney Problems

Posted on December 23, 2015 in Other

chimney problems

Chimneys are a great feature to have in your home – not only do they add charm, they also provide ventilation and give you a way to build a cozy fire to warm up a cold winter night. However, sometimes you may run into chimney a problem that can hamper its efficiency. For example:


When you burn wood in your fireplace, the smoke travels up the chimney and deposits a mixture called creosote.  Creosote is made from black or brown tar and soot, and it settles along the lining of your chimney. If it is not cleaned out on a regular basis, creosote can catch fire and not only damage your chimney, but it can spread and damage other areas of your home. If you haven’t cleaned your chimney in awhile, have it inspected by a professional.

Lining Deterioration

Chimney linings are typically made from clay or metal and protect your chimney from heat transfer, corrosive combustion byproducts, and provide efficient ventilation. If your lining is deteriorated due to creosote buildup, old age, or erosion, it can leave your home susceptible to fire damage and your family susceptible to toxic fumes.

Water Damage

Chimneys are made from brick or stone not only because these materials can handle heat, but also because they absorb moisture and keep your chimney dry. If your chimney is old or damaged, moisture may not be absorbed as efficiently and this can lead to water damage.

Water damage can also occur when your chimney lacks flashing or if your flashing is damaged. At P.J. Fitzpatrick, our Pennsylvania roofing experts can install or repair your chimney flashing to eliminate any possible water infiltration.

Cracked Flue

After years of fireplace use, your chimney flue has undergone a significant amount of stress, and that stress can lead to cracks. Just like with lining deterioration, a cracked flue can be dangerous and lead to fires or toxic fumes. It can be difficult to tell when a flue is cracked, so we recommend scheduling a professional inspection.

If you have any questions about your chimney or chimney problems, don’t hesitate to give us a call!

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