While chimneys come in all shapes and sizes, the vast majority of even new chimneys are still made the old fashioned way, out of brick and mortar masonry. While chimney design and safety have come a long way, the fundamentals of chimney construction have changed little in the past few centuries. And over time, the porous brick and mortar material will absorb water, which degrades masonry. Ensuring that your chimney is protected against the elements is one of the best things you can do for your home, and for your pocketbook.
Chimneys tend to come apart starting with the bricks at the top. Each time a brick comes loose, all the bricks below are weakened, and are that much likely to come loose. But by maintaining the chimney early on when deterioration is first apparent, it is possible to delay considerably the intervals by which the chimney needs full rebuilding. One of the best ways to do this is with a proper chimney crown. A crown is a sloped, water-proof slab of cement laid on the top of the chimney that helps to strengthen the bricks and keep water out of the structure. We can repair and replace crowns when they have been damaged or degraded.
We recommend protecting chimney masonry with waterproofing. Chimney waterproofing is a special type that is impervious to liquid water, but porous to vapor, which allows any moisture currently in the structure to escape. Chimneys should never be painted or sealed, because existing moisture can be trapped in the structure and will continue to damage the chimney and the paint job.
Remember, water is the main enemy of masonry structures, so by investing a little bit now in maintenance and protection, you can save a lot in the long run by protecting your chimney!
Please view our gallery to see examples of our masonry repair.