Autumn and winter are almost here for the Chicagoland area, that means a lot of snow will be falling. Although many people enjoy cuddling up in front of a warm fire during a winter storm, when the snow melts on your chimney, it can have a devastating effect on your brickwork. At Leonard and Sons, we want to talk to you about the importance of protecting your chimney from water. We also want to help you understand what you can do to make sure that your masonry is protected when fall and winter storms arrive. Making sure your chimney is waterproofed can save you a lot of time and money in the long run, so make sure that your chimney is protected.
Issues With Moisture
Moisture caused by rain, sleet, or snow is your chimney masonry’s worst enemy. Though you may not notice it, your chimney masonry is very porous. Tiny pores in your brickwork or mortar will allow water to enter and settle inside your masonry, eroding it from the inside out. Water intrusion in your masonry can amplify masonry issues in the winter when water freezes and expands, causing masonry to crack and crumble.
Your chimney opening is an obvious point of water entry, but there are other areas where your chimney is vulnerable too. When your chimney was installed, there was a gap left between your chimney and the edge of the opening where it comes out of your roof. This was done to allow for some wiggle room for your chimney and to prevent your home from absorbing too much heat. However, this gap can also allow water to get into your home.
Moisture Protection Mechanisms
There are a number of ways that we at Leonard and Sons can help you protect your chimney from moisture. Your first line of defense is a chimney cap. A chimney cap sits atop your chimney, protecting its opening from rain, snow, and sleet. Your chimney crown also protects your masonry by allowing water to run off the top of the chimney instead of settling on the brickwork. Finally, your chimney flashing is a strip of metal that covers that gap between the chimney and roof opening. This prevents water from entering your home and ensure your chimney is efficient.
At Leonard and Sons, we also offer masonry waterproofing services. Using a product called ChimneySaver, we can make sure that every inch of your chimney masonry is protected from moisture for the next 10 years. ChimneySaver works by coating your masonry with a thin clear sealant. This sealant is designed in a way that it will block 99.9 percent of moisture from entering your masonry, while still allowing moisture created by combustion to leave your home. The best part is that it doesn’t leave a visible film, so your chimney will still look as good as it always has.
If you don’t know if your chimney is protected from moisture, and you live in the Chicagoland area, give Leonard and Sons a call at 847-658-7659 or schedule an appointment online today. We can make sure that your chimney will stay nice and dry when winter storms come. Beat the fall rush and contact Leonard and Sons today!