Your chimney and venting system is made up of different components with varying functions, and a chimney cap ranks high in importance as one of these components. Serving several purposes, a properly-installed chimney cap will prolong the life of your fireplace and chimney system. Not everyone caps his chimney as some people feel it is an unnecessary expense; however, the cost of a chimney cap and its professional installation is much less expensive than the costs of the repairs of the damage that can be caused to an uncapped chimney. As Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA)-certified chimney sweeps, we at Aelite Chimney Specialties are committed to keeping your chimney and venting system working safely and properly. We would like to share with you a few reasons why a chimney cap is such an essential part of your fireplace and chimney system.
A Chimney Cap Keeps Wild Animals out of Your Chimney.
Every winter when birds, squirrels, and raccoons are looking for a warm, safe place to nest during the cold months, some of these animals can mistake your chimney for a hollow tree and use your chimney as a place to hibernate. Once they move in, it does not take long for a family of animals to make their new home in your flue. For example, squirrels can build a four foot deep nest in less than 24 hours. Animals in your chimney can be the cause of several problems. The nesting materials can be a fire hazard, and a nest can also cause a chimney blockage. If the exit of your chimney is blocked, smoke and toxic gases are trapped inside and are forced back into your home, which causes soot and smoke damage as well as the possibility of carbon monoxide poisoning. Birds and animals can become trapped within your chimney and eventually die. This will create a horrible odor within your home, along with a possible bug infestation. There is also the chance the birds and animals will get into your house through the fireplace and cause damage to your home. A chimney cap with mesh siding will keep these animals from intruding into your chimney in the first place.
A Chimney Cap Protects Your Chimney from Water Penetration.
One of the most important jobs of a chimney cap is to divert water away from your chimney. Water is the number one enemy of a masonry chimney because it can cause major deterioration to its structure. The most damage occurs during the freeze-thaw process in the winter. When moisture trapped inside the bricks freezes, it expands as it thaws, which causes cracks and other damage. Known as spalling, this may affect your masonry work, your chimney liner, and your chimney crown. A properly fitted and installed chimney cap is one of your best defenses against damage from water penetration of your masonry chimney.
A Chimney Cap Prevents Sparks from Jumping from the Chimney and Starting a Fire.
Without a chimney cap with mesh sides, sparks can escape from your chimney and land on your roof or be blown away by the wind to land in your yard, trees, or even on your neighborís roof. Even a tiny spark can ignite a fire. Capping your chimney is the best way to keep the sparks in your chimney.
Want to know more about the importance of a chimney cap? Contact Aelite Chimney Specialties to talk to our expert staff about this essential chimney component.