Why Every Chimney Needs a Quality Chimney Cap
If you’re operating your chimney without a chimney cap, how much is it costing you? Maybe nothing right now, but you could be facing a size-able bill to pay in the not-to-distant future.
What is a chimney cap?
Chimney caps are devices that attach to the top opening of a chimney. Most caps are made of steel or copper and come in a range of shapes and sizes. But the important thing about a chimney cap is what it does, not how it looks or what it’s made of.
Here are four reasons every chimney needs a quality chimney cap.
To block rain and snow
When water from rain or melting show is allowed into your chimney flue, a number of problems can start. Over time, the corrosive effect of water and moisture can eat away at the chimney’s interior masonry and the chimney liner. Brick damage can spread to the point the chimney is no longer safe to use.
Water in the flue also can result in mold growth and excessive dampness, especially in the off-season. When mixed with creosote and soot, incoming water will cause very strong and unpleasant odors to filter down into the home.
To keep out debris
With no cap in place, chimneys may collect a variety of unwanted debris like falling leaves and twigs from trees as well as families of small animals, some of whom like to use chimneys as nesting grounds.
The more debris in the flue, the more the drafting of smoke is impeded. If smoke can’t easily rise through and out of the chimney, it can back up into the home, carrying with it dangerous toxins such as carbon monoxide.
To prevent rooftop fireworks
A properly fitted chimney cap acts as a shield for hot embers and sparks that rise with smoke during a fire. Small red-hot particles, if not blocked, will land on the roof where they can start a fire.
It’s also possible for sparks to bypass the roof and land in the yard and do damage to lawn furniture, toys and other items.
To control downdrafts
Wind outside the home can blow any way it chooses, and often it chooses to blow right into a chimney. With no cap protecting the flue, the downdraft can blow fiery embers, wood particles, soot and smoke into your room.
Assuming you’re in the room at the time, you can probably keep a fire from starting, but who wants to deal with the mess of fireplace debris all over the rugs and furniture?
When properly installed, a new chimney cap will prevent all the above-mentioned problems and offer you and your family a much safer environment in which to live and enjoy your fireplace.
If you’ve been operating your chimney without a cap, we suggest you schedule a complete chimney inspection by a certified technician. This professional can determine if your chimney or any of its components have suffered water damage and get the problem fixed quickly. A chimney cap can then be installed to prevent trouble down the line.
High’s Chimney Service of Gaithersburg, MD, offers chimney sweep, chimney inspection and full chimney repair and component-installation services. We’ll keep you chimney running safely and at peak efficiency. Call us today at (301) 519-3500.