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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

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