When it comes to the weather, the old adage is true – April showers do bring May flowers! Unfortunately, spring showers can do more than just revitalize your garden after a long winter; they can also cause chimney damage. Water damage is often the primary cause of chimney deterioration. However, homeowners don’t have to sit idly by and watch the elements destroy their chimney. Instead, fight back against water damage by having your chimney waterproofed.
Although they are built to stand up to the elements, water is one of the most damaging forces to any chimney or masonry structure. Because bricks are naturally porous – which makes them the ideal building material for chimneys – they can absorb small amounts of water. Over time, this water can cause the masonry to crack, chip, or spall; this damage is often made worse by winter weather because of the freeze/thaw cycle.
The masonry damage caused by water entry is more than just an aesthetic problem. Damaged masonry can cause problems throughout your fireplace system, including chimney leaks. A chimney leak caused by cracked or spalled bricks can damage the surrounding masonry and building materials as well as other fireplace components. Dampness in the flue or firebox, water damage to roofs and walls surrounding the chimney, or cracked or missing bricks can all be signs of damaged masonry causing a chimney leak.
Protect your masonry through waterproofing
To protect your chimney from water damage caused by spring rains, consider having your masonry waterproofed. Waterproofing is preventative maintenance that can best protect your masonry against damage caused by water from rain, snow, ice, sprinklers, hoses, and other sources.
Our waterproofing products
When it comes to waterproofing your chimney, using the right products matters. In order to allow the masonry to retain its porous nature, special chimney-specific products should be used. At Jack Pixley Sweeps, we use and recommend three products by SaverSystems to our customers: ChimneySaver, CrownCoat, and FlashSeal.
- ChimneySaver: ChimneySaver is one of the longest-lasting water repellents available for chimneys. It can penetrate as deep as ¼ inch in most areas of the chimney, creating a strong bond with the masonry that will keep water out of years to come.
- CrownCoat: CrownCoat is a waterproof sealant designed for chimney crowns or washes. CrownCoat bonds with the cement of the chimney crown, protecting it from water entry and further damage to the concrete. CrownCoat also comes with a 15 year warranty against water intrustion.
- FlashSeal: FlashSeal is a rubber membrane that can be applied over your existing flashing to seal it against water entry. This is extremely important as faulty flashing is one of the main sources of chimney leaks. FlashSeal can reinforce existing flashing and is guaranteed to last up to seven years when correctly installed.
This year, don’t let spring rains damage your chimney; instead, protect your masonry by having it waterproofed. For those in the Minneapolis area, contact Jack Pixley Sweeps today for more information on our waterproofing services and to schedule your next appointment!