Chimney Care Company's Blog

Now’s The Time To Make Your Chimney Sweeping And Inspection Appointment

Fall has arrived! Cooler temperatures are just around the corner. Before you know it, you will be ready to light your first fire of the fall. However, before you ignite a fire in your fireplace, you need to have your chimney swept and inspected. To avoid missing out on some of the fire-burning season, now is the time to schedule your annual chimney sweeping and inspection appointment. So, why is it so important to have your chimney and fireplace cleaned and inspected before you use your fireplace?

Chimney Sweeping And Inspection Appointment Image - Cincinnati OH - Chimney Care CompanyPrevent a chimney fire.

The most important reason to have your chimney swept and inspected before you use it this fall? Preventing a dangerous and damaging chimney fire! Every time you burn a fire in your fireplace, the smoke that travels up your chimney deposits fire byproducts on the walls of your chimney. Over time, those deposits harden into creosote. Creosote is incredibly flammable. Consequently, if it’s allowed to build up too thickly, a spare spark or extreme heat from your fireplace can cause it to ignite. To prevent chimney fires due to creosote, the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) recommends that you have your chimney swept and inspected at least once a year.

Make sure your chimney is free from obstructions.

If you haven’t used your fireplace within the last year, or if you didn’t use it frequently last winter, you still need to have your chimney swept and inspected before you light a fire. Animals can make their way into the chimney and become stuck or build nests. Leaves and twigs can find their way into uncovered chimneys. When animals or debris become stuck in your chimney, they will prevent smoke from exiting your home. Chimney blockages can even cause dangerous carbon monoxide to build up within your home.

Spot chimney or fireplace damage.

The inspection component of your annual chimney service is just as important as the sweeping. Your inspection ensures that your fireplace and chimney are properly functioning. In addition, free from any signs of damage or leaks. Unnoticed chimney or fireplace damage can be a fire hazard, and unaddressed chimney damage can worsen to the point where the chimney structure or your home structure becomes compromised. With a chimney inspection, you can spot and address damage before it becomes a major problem!

Enjoy fireplace upgrades.

Of course, your annual chimney sweeping and inspection isn’t all drudgery; you can take the opportunity to ask questions or perform the fireplace or chimney upgrades you’ve been considering! Whether it’s a new fireplace insert, new fireplace doors, or a more efficient top-sealing damper you’ve been considering, your chimney technician can answer your hearth-related questions and help you plan your hearth upgrade.

Are you ready to schedule your chimney sweeping and inspection? If so, call the Chimney Care Co. to schedule an appointment today! We’ll make sure your fireplace and chimney are clean, damage free and ready to warm your home this fall and winter. Don’t miss out on a single fire this fall: Now is the time to schedule your annual chimney sweeping and inspection!

Water damaged chimney? We repair them!

The Chimney Safety Institute of America has deemed water a chimney’s No. 1 enemy. That’s because nothing can damage a chimney like water. When water makes its way into your chimney, it can damage every chimney component, from the masonry chimney structure, flue liner and firebox to the metal damper, fire grate and fireplace doors. Protecting your chimney from water damage means knowing how water can damage a chimney and spotting and repairing water damage as quickly as possible.

How Water Damages A Chimney

Masonry is porous. When your masonry chimney is hit with rain, sleet or snow, it absorbs the moisture. When temperatures drop, the water within the masonry freezes and expands, causing the mortar, bricks and cement to crack and crumble.

Some common victims of masonry chimney damage include:

  • Chimney crowns.
    Cracked chimney crowns are incredible common, especially if the chimney crown wasn’t constructed from the right materials to begin with.
  • Mortar.
    One of the most common signs of chimney water damage is crumbling mortar. Mortar crumbling from in between chimney joints is unsightly, and it can weaken your chimney structure.
  • Chimney bricks.
    Moisture making its way into your chimney bricks can cause the faces of the bricks to fall or crumble away.
  • Flue tiles and fire box bricks.
    When water manages to make its way into your chimney’s interior, it can cause cracking and spalling of the tile chimney flue liners and the bricks that line your firebox.

Water that invades your chimney’s interior also can cause problems with the metal components of the chimney. It can cause chimney dampers and fireplace doors to rust and stick in place, and it can cause fire grates to rust away.

What To Do About Chimney Water Damage

If you’ve noticed signs of water damage in your chimney, the Chimney Care Co. can help! We repair chimney water damage! If you see signs of a chimney leak or signs of water damage, it’s crucial to call in the professionals immediately! When chimney water damage is ignored, the problem can grow and intensify. Your overall chimney structure can become weak and unsafe, and water leaking in through the chimney can spread to the abutting home structure, causing wood rot and mold.

The Chimney Care Co. also can help you stop chimney damage before it starts.

We can protect your chimney from water damage in several ways, including:

  • Installing a chimney cap.
    Chimney caps are the best defense against water damage. Chimney caps ensure that water doesn’t flow down the interior of your chimney.
  • Making sure your chimney crown is properly constructed.
    Chimney crowns are meant to direct water away from your chimney flue and keep water from running down the sides of your chimney, but they are often improperly constructed and fail to perform their functions. An improperly constructed chimney crown should be rebuilt to protect your chimney from water damage.
  • Waterproofing.
    One of the best ways to protect your chimney from water damage is with a waterproofing treatment. Chimney waterproofing blocks moisture from entering your chimney’s masonry while still allowing your chimney to breath.

If you see signs of water damage on your chimney or if you’d like to protect your chimney from water damage, call the Chimney Care Co. to schedule an appointment today!

Elements of a proper chimney crown

The chimney crown provides vital protection to the chimney structure. When properly constructed, the chimney crown channels water away from the chimney flue and prevents water from flowing down the outer walls of the chimney. Too often, chimney crowns have been improperly constructed from the wrong materials, leaving your chimney and fireplace at risk for water damage. Knowing the elements of a proper chimney crown can help you to ensure that your chimney and your home are protected.

Cement construction

Often, when chimneys are being constructed, builders will cut corners by using the same mortar that goes between the bricks to construct the chimney crown. This mortar is too weak to stand up to the elements, and it will crack and crumble quickly, leaving your chimney susceptible to water intrusion. Chimney crowns should be constructed of strong cement, which will hold up to wind, water and freezing temperatures to protect your chimney year after year.


The purpose of a chimney crown is to funnel water away from your chimney flue to protect the inside of your chimney and fireplace from water intrusion. To help direct water down and away from your chimney, the chimney crown should be sloped.


Your chimney’s porous masonry can absorb water. Over time, that water can deteriorate the chimney materials and, eventually, the chimney structure. A simple overhang of the chimney crown can help to protect the exterior chimney walls from water. The underside of the overhang should have a groove around the parameter to prevent water from following the surface of the overhang and flowing onto the chimney walls.

Gap against the chimney flue

If your chimney flue contains a tile flue liner, the flue liner needs to be isolated from the chimney crown. Tile liners become extremely hot when the chimney is in use, and they can expand. The expanded liners put pressure on the chimney crown, which can cause cracks. The chimney crown should be constructed so that it does not touch the chimney liner, and the chimney liner should be surrounded with thin foam and then caulked with a specialized masonry caulking.


Wherever there are seems in your home, whether around windows or doors, in your roofline or around your chimney, there needs to be flashing to seal the gaps and keep water out. Your chimney crown should be completed with a layer of flashing where the crown meets the top of the masonry chimney. The flashing will ensure that water cannot seep into the chimney between the chimney structure and the chimney crown.

If your chimney crown is letting water into your chimney and your home because it was improperly constructed or because it has deteriorating over time, call the Chimney Care Co. to schedule a consultation today! We can reconstruct your chimney crown the right way to ensure that your chimney and your home are protected from water damage.

By Jeff Keefer | Tagged with: Tags: , , | Leave a Comment

Summer is a great time to have your chimney cleaned and inspected!

Come summer, most homeowners forget about their fireplace and chimney. Then, as fall begins to chill the air, everyone rushes to schedule their annual chimney cleaning and inspection! However, don’t wait. For a variety of reasons, summer is a great time to schedule your chimney sweeping and inspection!

Take advantage of summer weather.

No homeowner likes to think about the possibility of chimney repairs.  Having said that, one of the main purposes of your annual chimney sweeping and inspection is to spot repairs.  Schedule your chimney cleaning and inspection for the summer. By doing this, you give yourself time for any repairs that might need to be made to your chimney. In fact, many masonry repairs can’t be performed in cold or damp weather and are ideally completed in the summer. This means that if damage is spotted during the fall, you might need to wait until spring to have the damage repaired. That could mean rendering your chimney unusable for an entire winter season! In addition, allowing damage to worsen as you wait for suitable weather for repairs.

Avoid a stinky chimney!

When you burn fires in your fireplace, creosote builds up within your chimney. During the cold winter months, you might not give much thought to creosote. Unfortunately, during the summer, creosote in your chimney mixes with hot, humid weather. This can make creosote stink like hot asphalt! By having your chimney cleaned in the summer, you can avoid having your home filled with foul chimney odors all summer.

Plan for improvements?

Have you been thinking about improving your fireplace or chimney? Whether it’s with a new fireplace insert, fireplace doors, or cosmetic masonry repairs, summer is the time to consult with chimney professionals! When you have your chimney swept and inspected in the summer, you can ask your chimney technician about possible improvements. Afterwards, have those improvements completed before you’re ready to use your fireplace in the fall!

Beat the fall rush.

Most homeowners plan their annual chimney sweeping and inspection for the fall. Fortunately, you can skip the fall rush by scheduling your sweeping and inspection for the summer! When you wait to schedule your annual chimney maintenance until the fall, you risk calling the chimney sweep after his or her schedule has filled up for the season. That could have you waiting weeks for you annual sweeping and inspection. This could delay your first fire of the season!

Scheduling a summertime chimney sweeping and inspection comes with a host of benefits. Not to mention, it allows you to check something off your home maintenance to-do list. Enjoy the benefits of a summertime chimney cleaning and inspection. Call the Chimney Care Co. to schedule your appointment today!

Protect Your Chimney With Waterproofing

So often, we focus our chimney maintenance efforts on sweeping and keeping our chimneys clear of creosote and debris to ward of the dangers of a chimney fire. While chimney sweeping is undoubtedly important, your chimney’s No. 1 enemy, according to the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA), is water. Fortunately, you can keep your chimney — and your home — safe from water damage with a waterproofing treatment from ChimneySaver.

How water can damage your chimney.

The masonry materials many chimneys are constructed of are highly porous. Because your chimney rises high above your roof-line, it sees little protection from driving rain and melting snow. All of that water that comes into contact with your chimney is drawn into the chimney’s bricks and mortar. That can lead to several problems. The chimney itself can become damaged when temperatures drop and the water inside the chimney freezes and expands. The expanding water causes bricks and mortar to crack and crumble away. Over time, that damage can allow more water to penetrate the chimney, and it can weaken the entire chimney structure.

Additionally, moisture that enters through the chimney can damage your entire chimney and fireplace system. The damper can warp and rust, as can any metal components of the fireplace, including fireplace doors, fireboxes and fireplace grates. Moisture inside the chimney can cause flue tiles to crack or spall, and moisture into the chimney can cause a musty, smoky odor to fill your home. If chimney water damage is left unchecked, the leak can gain access to the rest of your home’s structure, causing mold to grow and wooden supports to rot away.

Protecting your chimney with ChimneySaver.

ChimneySaver has been protecting chimneys from water damage for more than 20 years. The solution is applied to the outside of your chimney, and once it is in place, it prevents more than 99 percent of moisture from entering your chimney’s masonry. At the same time, ChimneySaver still allows your chimney to “breathe.” That means vapors put off by your fireplace, which often includes water, can still exit through the chimney walls. Unlike ChimneySaver, other chimney waterproofing treatments can trap moisture, which can lead to crumbling, spalling masonry.

ChimneySaver’s water-based formula is environmentally friendly. It won’t leave a glossy finish on your chimney, and in addition to protecting your chimney from freeze-thaw damage, ChimneySaver can protect your chimney from mold and mildew growth and efflorescent stains. ChimneySaver’s waterproofing solution also comes with a 10-year warranty.

Call the Chimney Care Co. to protect your chimney from water damage!

If you want to keep your masonry chimney safe from water damage, call the Chimney Care Co. to schedule an appointment today! We can apply ChimneySaver’s waterproofing solution to protect your chimney from freeze-thaw damage, unsightly stains and mold, and to save you from have to repair costly water damage down the road.

By Jeff Keefer | Tagged with: Tags: , , | Leave a Comment

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Chimney Care Company | 413 Wards Corner Road, Loveland, Ohio 45140