Does your home have a chimney? Even if you have stopped using the fireplace years ago, it still needs to be in good shape to prevent bricks from falling out of it. In order to determine if you need chimney repair, look for these warning signs.
Mortar Chunks That Are Missing
Mortar is the material used to hold the bricks on your home together. As the mortar gets older, it will start crumbling and falling apart. If enough mortar becomes loose, it's possible for bricks on the chimney to fall out.
Take a look at your chimney's mortar, even if it means getting out a ladder and inspecting it up high on the chimney. If it's starting to crumble, you'll need professional tuck-pointing performed to remove and replace the mortar that is starting to fail. It can save your chimney from getting worse and needing a more expensive repair later.
Moisture Inside The Fireplace
You'll also want to inspect inside your fireplace by looking for moisture buildup. It is not normal to have moisture collect in the fireplace and is, therefore, a clear sign that something is wrong. When you have an excessive buildup of moisture, it could be due to mortar that is missing and allowing water to get inside or flashing that is damaged and needs to be replaced or repaired.
Falling Chimney Tiles Inside The Fireplace
In addition to moisture, you should look out for chimney tiles that have fallen out and collected at the bottom of your fireplace. You may notice a single tile in there from time to time over the years, especially when the chimney is very old. Several tiles falling at the same time is a reason to be concerned though.
The reason this could be happening is because the flue is damaged. Not only will the flue need to be repaired, but those missing chimney tiles will need to be fixed as well.
Water Inside The Chimney
If you are getting a significant amount of water in the chimney when it rains, it is likely from a damaged chimney cap. This cap is what allows smoke to leave the chimney, but it also keeps water, animals, and debris from entering it. This should be a simple repair of swapping out the old cap for a new one.
If you have more questions, contact a local chimney repair company like Clean Sweep to inspect and repair damage for you.