Wednesday, September 24, 2014

How to Protect Your Chimney from Water Leaks

Water is a chimney's worst enemy. Chimney leaks, fireplace leaks, and water damage may be from exterior water intrusion caused by no chimney cap, crown cracks & deterioration, mortar joint deterioration, cracking in the masonry construction, flashing & roof leaks, shoulder slab gaps, foundation cracking, and/or flue gas condensation (over or under sized chimney liners).

Masonry water damage caused by chimney leaks is sometimes a slow, subtle process. Chimney leaks are often not evident until it has become quite serious.

Protect your investment from chimney leaks:

  • Have professional grade chimney caps installed.
  • Repair or replace a damaged chimney crown.
  • Repair deteriorated brick & mortar joints.
  • Repair or replace a leaky flashing.
  • Have your chimney waterproofed!

Call Superior Chimney Services, Corp. today at 877-CHIM-FIX (877-244-6349). We will answer your questions and schedule a time to inspect your chimney.

Friday, August 29, 2014

Common Question: Why Do I Need to Have My Chimney Cleaned?

Chimney sweeps are for integrity purposes, cleaning, and obstruction free assurance. Creosote, also known as soot, is a natural byproduct of burning wood. As the smoke goes up your fireplace chimney, creosote clings to the inner walls of your chimney. Creosote is highly flammable and causes chimney fires. An annually chimney sweep with inspection helps to provide safe continuous use as recommended by Code 211 of the NFPA (National Fire Protection Association).

Call Superior Chimney today at 877-CHIM-FIX (877-244-6349). We will answer your questions and schedule a time to inspect your chimney.

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Brick Masonry Chimney Rebuilds

Also known as chimney reconstruction, brick chimney repairs, fireplace chimney repairs, partial chimney rebuilds, roof line up chimney rebuilds, or total chimney rebuilds. Cracking, water leaking, element exposure, usage, time, and lack of preventative maintenance render your chimney structurally vulnerable, inviting the need for fireplace chimney repairs, and/or requiring a chimney rebuild. You may have to start over with a chimney rebuild and a waterproofing protection plan.
As odd as it may seem, chimney leaks cause more damage to masonry chimneys than fire. (Chimney leaks cause costly fireplace chimney repair needs - Waterproofing saves you money!)
Superior's chimney rebuilds include set up (scaffolding in most cases), tear down & disposal, Brick Masonry Chimney Rebuilds and code reconstruction of your existing chimney. These classifications are the most common of required chimney rebuilds:
  • Partial chimney rebuilds: small chimneys (no scaffolding) or only the top few courses of a large chimney (+ new crown).
  • Flashing area up chimney rebuilds: Substantial mortar and/or brick deterioration has eliminated the possibility of a tuck pointing (tuckpointing) restoration. The structure is torn down to the flashing area near the roofline, and then the chimney rebuild commences (+ new crown).
  • Total chimney rebuilds: Complete tear down of the outer layer of the brick on a chimney (+ new crown). In most cases the firebox, hearth, and smoke chamber do not have to be removed (minor brick chimney repair is usually sufficient). Total chimney rebuilds are necessary when the chimney is leaning, has severe mortar deterioration or severe brick spalling has occurred from ground level up, etc.
A chimney crown is of the greatest protection for the masonry construction beneath it by helping to prevent the need for fireplace chimney repairs & chimney rebuilding. It is the top element of a masonry chimney rebuild (cement slab). It protects the top of the chimney starting at the fire clay flue liner & hangs over the chimneys edge (drip edge). Most masonry chimneys that have "crowns" are built inadequately. These "crowns" are constructed from common mortar mix, the same mixture used to lay the bricks of the chimney. This mortar is not designed for and will not withstand years of weather abuse without cracking, chipping or deteriorating; situations that allow water to penetrate the chimney and cause the need for fireplace chimney repairs & chimney rebuilds.
All the brick and other materials that make up your home are protected by the roof and eave, all that is, except your chimney. The chimney sticks up above the roof constantly exposed to all the elements; rain, snow, wind, freeze & thaw cycles of winter, etc. Masonry materials deteriorate very quickly when they absorb moisture and are exposed to the freeze & thaw cycles of winter, causing undue stress; integrity loss, fireplace chimney repair & chimney rebuild needs.
Chimney leaks & water penetration cause interior and exterior damage to your home and masonry chimney. Water inside your chimney causes rust in steel and cast iron, weakening or destroying the metal parts, and compromising fire worthiness - all creating fireplace chimney repair or chimney rebuild needs.

* Repeated and/or improper brick chimney repairs, fireplace chimney repairs, and chimney rebuilds are of the largest causes of needing a chimney rebuild.

PREVENTATIVE MAINTENANCE:

Superior Chimney can apply chimney saver, which has been developed specifically for use as a waterproofing agent on masonry chimneys to aid in preservation of integrity preventing brick chimney repair needs. This formula is vapor permeable, which means that it allows your masonry chimney to breathe out, but not in. Thus, water that has penetrated your masonry chimney, or moisture that has originated from inside, is allowed to escape, while the waterproofing agent prevents water entry from the outside. Read more about masonry Chimney Saver & how it can prevent brick chimney repair needs & chimney rebuilds.
Call Superior Chimney today at 877-CHIM-FIX (877-244-6349). We will answer your questions and schedule a time to inspect your chimney.

Friday, June 27, 2014

Enervex / Exhausto Fireplace Fans

Also known as Enervex fans, chimney fans, chimney exhaust fans, fireplace fans, or chimney smoke fans. Exhausto chimney fans are an easy and 100% effective solution for chimney smoke problems including draft problems, improperly sized flues, low termination heights, poor design, negative pressure problems, and more.

Advantages of exhausto fireplace fans:

  • No fireplace smoke in the house - 100% guaranteed.
  • Extremely quiet operation - uses as much energy as a regular light bulb.
  • Maintenance free motor.
  • Can be coated a variety of colors to compliment any exterior.
  • Also acts as a ventilator to clear the home of other odors (cigarette smoke, stale odors, etc.).
  • The White House has an exhausto fireplace fan on every chimney. (Trusted proof!)

Advantages of exhausto fireplace fans:

  • No fireplace smoke in the house - 100% guaranteed.
  • Extremely quiet operation - uses as much energy as a regular light bulb.
  • Maintenance free motor.
  • Can be coated a variety of colors to compliment any exterior.
  • Also acts as a ventilator to clear the home of other odors (cigarette smoke, stale odors, etc.).
  • The White House has an exhausto fireplace fan on every chimney. (Trusted proof!)

100% effective solution - Even difficult chimney smoke problems such as poorly proportioned corner fireplaces, see-through fireplaces, back drafting fireplaces, and odors from your chimney are solved with Superior Chimney's exhausto fireplace fans. The only 100% guaranteed resolution to all chimney smoke problems!

Call Superior Chimney today at 877-CHIM-FIX (877-244-6349). We will be able to answer any questions you might have about Enervex / Exhausto Fireplace Fans.

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Chimney Odors & Fireplace Smell

Do you have a funny smoky smell in your home? If so, it might be due to your chimney!

Fireplace smells come from creosote deposits in your chimney, a natural byproduct of burning wood. Chimney odors are usually worse in the summer - so if you're not experiencing this issue now you might be soon! - when the humidity is high, on rainy days, and/or when the air conditioner is running.

How do the smells occur? Air travels down the chimney, a symptom of overall pressure problems. As air moves down through your chimney, it brings the inner fireplace smells & chimney odors along with it and into your home.

Below are a few causes of pressure change and fireplace smells.

  1. Inefficient damper closures.
  2. New furnace, boiler, and/or water heater.
  3. New windows and/or doors.
  4. Home additions.
  5. A change in your roofing ventilation (attic fan).
  6. Stove range exhaust fans.
  7. Dryer vent exhausts.
  8. A neighboring structure's height increase.

Call Superior Chimney today at 877-CHIM-FIX (877-244-6349). We can schedule an appointment to assess your chimney and its termination environment to find the cause(s) of the fireplace smell and give you a resolution.

Monday, April 28, 2014

How Often Do I Need My Chimney Cleaned?

You'll want to clean you chimney based on how much you use it. Basically, cleaning intervals are based on usage. The more wood burned the more creosote accumulation within. It is recommended to sweep your wood-burning chimney after every face chord of wood burned. The NFPA (National Fire Protection Association) code 211 says, "Chimneys, fireplaces, and vents shall be inspected at least once a year for soundness, freedom from deposits, and correct clearances. Cleaning, maintenance, and repairs shall be done if necessary." Annual inspection with a fireplace chimney sweep as required. This is the National safety standard!

Call Superior Chimney today at 877-CHIM-FIX (877-244-6349). We will answer your questions and schedule a time to clean your chimney.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Preventing Deteriorated Brickwork on Chimneys

Did you know that deteriorated brickwork weakens the chimney's integrity? If the brickwork on your chimney becomes deteriorated it can allow cold drafts, water and insects to invade your home.

Not to worry, we can help prevent this from happening!

Superior Chimney can apply chimney saver, which has been developed specifically for use as a waterproofing agent on masonry chimneys to aid in preservation of integrity preventing brick chimney repair needs. This formula is vapor permeable, which means that it allows your masonry chimney to breathe out, but not in. Thus, water that has penetrated your masonry chimney, or moisture that has originated from inside, is allowed to escape, while the waterproofing agent prevents water entry from the outside. Read more about masonry Chimney Saver & how it prevents brick chimney repair needs.

Important Tip: Paint, or any non-vapor permeable water sealer, should never be used as a waterproofing agent because it will trap moisture inside your masonry chimney, accelerate deterioration, and cause brick chimney repair needs.

Call Superior Chimney today at 877-CHIM-FIX (877-244-6349). We will answer your questions and schedule a time to inspect your chimney.