Signs of Chimney Problems
If you’ve noticed marked, degenerative changes in the appearance of your masonry stone or brick chimney, you are probably wondering if the damage calls for immediate repair. Although a leaning chimney is certainly a cause for instantaneous action, you might think you can let other occurrences go for a while. These instances include slight chimney moving, and highly noticeable chimney cracks. While you might immediately realize that chimney moving is a structural issue, you might not know that external blemishes are also telltale signs of chimney foundation problems. Most of these signs mean that your chimney can actual fall like a tree. This would certainly be expensive to repair and may cause damage to surrounding property or injury to people or pets.
Therefore,it is a good idea to familiarize yourself with the way in which a chimney is constructed to better help yourself decide if you need to pursue chimney repairs as soon as possible to maintain the structural integrity of your chimney.
About Chimney Construction
Masonry chimneys are constructed using underpinning piers that allow the weight of the chimney to be evenly distributed on them, which allows them to remain erect. However, just like your home’s foundation, your chimney’s foundation can settle over time, and cause an obvious leaning chimney appearance, and slight chimney moving.
Some chimneys are built with wood framing and house siding to enclose a simple metal pipe. Many of these chimneys rest on concrete slab foundations. Signs of chimney problems for this type of chimney construction include siding or trim that is bowing or popped out of place.
Other factors that can upset your chimney’s stability include clay soil footings known to cause foundational problems, water damage to the chimney footing itself, deteriorating chimney mortar, and actual physical damage to the chimney or chimney caps caused by fallen storm debris, such as tree limbs.
Any signs of chimney construction failure should not be ignored. You can call a chimney repair company in Atlanta to request a free inspection. If there is a problem you can usually get a repair quote on the same day as the inpsection. With any quote that you get it is important to confirm what is included and what may be required that is not included.
Hiring Quality Chimney Repair Services
Aside from the obvious leaning chimney that could potentially fall and physically harm anyone or anything near it, chimney cracks look like a masonry, not foundational, problem. However, a very small crack at the base of your chimney footing can be a sign that your chimney is sinking, and will cause a massive shift in the weight of the chimney that could cause it to lean, or immediately fall. Chimney cracks can also be indicative of water leaking through your chimney cap, improper construction, or frost damage.
The only way to be sure if you really need chimney repairs due to cracking is to get a free estimate from a local chimney repair services company. During the inspection, the company representative will analyze the cracks to determine if they are a masonry problem that can be fixed to improve the appearance of the form, or a latent sign of a much larger dangerous situation happening within the structure of your chimney.
Before hiring any chimney repair contractor in Atlanta you should make certain that they carry adequate liability insurance and have specific experience in chimney repair, and (if applicable) brick and masonry repair.