When you open up your chimney damper, do you, have water, leaves, ashes and other debris fall into your fireplace? If this is happening there are a few different possible causes. They are usually very easy to fix, but finding and diagnosing the problem is often the hardest part. This article explains two of the most common causes of a leaky chimney and how they are fixed. You can personally do some of these checks, but most of the work (definitely the actual repairs) will need to handled by chimney repair experts.
Your Flashing is No Longer Waterproof
Checking the flashing is a job that you can easily do on your own, as long as you have a ladder and are able to climb up onto your roof. The metal flashing needs to be securely sealed on all four sides of the chimney. On sloped roofs, the upper side of the flashing is the most vulnerable because this is where water can pool up. If the adhesives that secure your flashing is peeling away, there is a good chances that water can be leaking into your chimney flue. Some people try to fix their flashing on their own. This is possible if you have roofing knowledge, but it is best left to the pros. Also, there is not point in resealing your flashing if there is already water damage in the flue. That is, you should fix and seal the flue before worrying about the flashing.
Your Flue is Not Sealed
The inside walls of your chimney, the flue, can become susceptible to water damage if the flue cover is broken or removed. Of course, water can also seep through if your flashing is not watertight and/or the siding on your chimney exterior is not waterproof. The only way to accurately diagnose a leaky flue is to have an expert do it. They get on your roof, remove the flue cover and drop a special camera into the chimney. This camera is not only used to find leaks, it is also used to make the repairs. They use special tools to spray and seal the flue. They will usually seal the entire chimney, even if there only seem to be a few leaky spots.
If you suspect that your flashing or flue (or both) is the source of your problem, you should call in a chimney expert. It is the best way to get your problem identified and fixed. Visit http://www.bramblebuilders.com for more information.