Our Company Blog

Why Buy Your Chimney Cap From Chimney Professionals

You can trust Aelite with your next chimney cap!

You can trust Aelite with your next chimney cap!

Our staff at Aelite Chimney Specialties understands how important it is for our customers to save money however they can, but there are times when it is worth spending extra money for quality products. One of these times is when you are purchasing a new chimney cap. While it may seem like a great bargain to buy a chimney cap from a big box store like Costco or Sam’s Club, you will most likely end up spending more money on repairs and possibly even the replacement of that cheap cap that you thought was such a good deal. We would like to tell you why you should always buy your chimney cap from certified chimney professionals.

SUPERIOR METAL

The chimney caps that are sold at the big box discount stores are inexpensive for a reason. According to Do It Yourself, the chimney caps you will find at big box discount stores are generally made from galvanized metal, which means they are more likely to become corroded by rusting. Galvanized chimney caps can even cause damage to the interior of your chimney when they become rusted. At Aelite Chimney Specialties, we sell chimney caps that are constructed from higher quality metals like stainless steel and copper. We find these metals do not rust as easily and provide long-lasting durability.

PROFESSIONAL INSTALLATION

When you purchase your chimney cap from a store like Costco, Sam’s Club, Home Depot, etc, you will most likely be on your own to install the chimney cap. While this may seem like an easy job, installing a chimney cap actually takes knowledge, experience, and precision to be sure your chimney is adequately protected from water leaks and animal invasions. If you buy your chimney cap from Aelite Chimney Specialties, you can trust our certified chimney technicians to properly fit the cap on top of your chimney. They will also ensure the cap is securely fastened to the chimney so that it will not blow away in a wind storm.

LIFETIME WARRANTY

Every chimney cap sold by Aelite Chimney Specialties comes with a lifetime warranty. We also provide warranty coverage of our professional chimney cap installation services. You want to be fully covered by an extensive warranty when it comes to your chimney cap in case you need repairs performed to fix damage. Generally, the big box stores will not offer an extensive warranty coverage with the cheaper chimney caps they sell, and this means you will have to pay for the repairs to the inevitable damage that occurs to an inferior cap.

If you need a new chimney cap, contact Aelite Chimney Specialties to learn more about the options we have for you.

By Nick Wagner | Tagged with: Tags: , , | Leave a Comment

Schedule a Spring Chimney Sweeping and Inspection

Make a chimney sweep part of your spring cleaning!

Make a chimney sweep part of your spring cleaning!

We know it may be difficult to believe, but spring is here, and fireplace season will be slowing down. To be sure your chimney is safe after a heavy usage during a long and cold winter, scheduling your annual chimney sweeping and inspection now is essential, especially if your chimney is in need of important repairs. At Aelite Chimney Specialties, one of our least busiest times of the year is the spring, so you can easily make an appointment for our certified technicians to visit your home to clean, examine, and repair your chimney. According to fire safety organizations such as the National Fire Prevention Association (NFPA), it is recommended you schedule a chimney sweeping and inspection once every year. We would like to share with you the important chimney maintenance steps our chimney technicians will take to find essential repairs needed to make your fireplace and chimney system safe.

CHIMNEY SWEEPING

When the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA)-certified sweeps at Aelite Chimney Specialties clean your chimney after winter, our main concern is removing all of the creosote deposits that have accumulated on the walls of your chimney. Forming naturally as the by-products of combustion (smoke, gases, tar fog, vapors, etc) exit the cooler walls of your upper chimney, creosote is the highly combustible result of the condensation that occurs. Creosote can be either black or brown, and its appearance can vary. Whether it is sticky and gummy, crispy and brittle, or shiny and hard, creosote, especially in large amounts, is extremely flammable, which makes it the cause of a majority of chimney fires. Getting rid of these creosote buildups after winter’s heavy fireplace usage is essential to the safety of your chimney.

CHIMNEY INSPECTING

Aelite Chimney Specialties takes pride in performing detailed post-winter chimney inspections because we want to find any damage that needs repairing to ensure the safety of your fireplace and chimney. Of course, we seriously examine every part of your chimney; however, there are specific repairs we are looking for, including the following:

Damaged or deteriorated masonry

Loose bricks and chipped mortar on the exterior of your chimney are sure signs of water penetration damage, and this alerts us to the possibility of water leaking inside your chimney that creates even more damage to its interior. If this masonry damage goes unrepaired, you will end up with costly repair work, including a possible rebuild of your entire chimney.

Cracks in the chimney cap

Your chimney cap serves as protection from both water and animal intrusions of your chimney. A deteriorated chimney cap serves no help at all to your chimney. We can repair cracks and other damage to chimney caps as well as install new caps if the existing caps are beyond repairing.

Cracks and holes in the chimney flue liner

Water leaks can cause serious damage to the liner of your chimney that can endanger your family’s health. A deteriorating flue liner allows toxic gases like carbon monoxide to leak into your home. Repairing or replacing a damaged chimney flue liner will keep those gases exiting out of your chimney instead of infiltrating the interior air of your home.

Get your chimney cleaned after the long winter by contacting Aelite Chimney Specialties now. We are happy to schedule an appointment for your annual sweeping and inspection as well as perform all necessary repairs.

By Nick Wagner | Tagged with: Tags: , , | Leave a Comment

Your Chimney Needs a Cap

Why Chimney Caps Are Important

Anyone with a fireplace in their home has, at one time or another, most likely had some trouble with their chimney. What they may not realize is that many common chimney problems can be quickly solved by installing a small piece called a chimney cap. A chimney cap protects the opening at the top of the chimney, which can be the starting site for a number of problems that arise frequently. They are inexpensive and it is easy to have them installed.

One of the most important reasons to have a chimney cap is that it helps keep excess water out of the chimney. Water often finds its way into the flue in the way of rain or snow and then accumulates within the chimney liner. This can cause mold that leads to dangerous illnesses and, in some cases, can compromise the structural integrity of the chimney. A chimney filled with water is also likely to become a breeding ground for pests. A chimney cap is a simple way to avoid the issue completely.

One of the most destructive things for the structural integrity of your chimney is when moisture gets in. It can loosen and weaken masonry. A chimney cap minimizes the flow.

One of the most destructive things for the structural integrity of your chimney is when moisture gets in. It can loosen and weaken masonry. A chimney cap minimizes the flow.

Another common chimney problem is that animals make their way into the chimney and set up their homes there. Not only will this cause annoying scratching sounds, but it can actually be dangerous for the people living inside of the house. The animals that live in chimneys often carry diseases and they do not have to enter the home to pass them on to the people living in it. If they do make their way into the house, there is always a chance that they could bite someone, causing both illness and injury. When there is a cap on the chimney, they cannot get in there in the first place.

When the chimney is left without a cap, it is easy for leaves, twigs, and other natural debris to build up inside of the flue. This may not seem like a big deal but it can actually be quite dangerous. When the chimney is clogged with these materials, it cannot vent properly and smoke often comes back into the home rather than exiting it. It also prevents dangerous gasses, including carbon monoxide, from safely leaving the home. In the worst cases, a clogged chimney can lead to a dangerous chimney fire that spreads throughout the home.

Whenever a fire is going in the fireplace, it is natural that there will be a bit of smoke. However, when the room is filling up with smoke, there is a problem. Oftentimes, the problem is negative air pressure when wind blows into the chimney. A chimney cap allows dangerous smoke and gas out, but it prevents the air that blows those gasses into the home from getting in. This is a vital part of enjoying a fire without filling the entire home with plumes of smoke.

A chimney cap is a fairly simple and inexpensive piece. In fact, it is so simple that many homeowners are tempted to simply install them themselves. However, this should be avoided in favor of a professional who has experience with these instillations. If the job is not done properly, the chimney cap will be ineffective and the home will still be at risk. In addition, it requires climbing on the chimney, which can be dangerous for a person who is not used to working at that height.

Leaving the chimney uncovered invites a host of problems, including animals living in the chimney and poisonous gasses entering the home. Instead of dealing with these serious issues, homeowners can have a simple chimney cap installed that will prevent them completely. Any homeowner who is not sure whether or not their chimney has a cap should have it inspected as soon as possible.

Anatomy of Your Chimney

Getting to Know the Parts of a Chimney

There’s that time of year when you’d want to snuggle up with your loved ones as you endure a cold day – a time when you need warmth and comfort. What better way to do that than in front of a cozy well-kept fireplace. Fireplaces and chimneys have been an integral part of homes for many centuries, especially in countries that are further north or south from the equator, or that have four seasons a year. During winter time, people are likely to experience freezing temperatures for a very long time. They need something that can keep them warm.

Understanding how the different parts of your chimney work together for maximum efficiency and safety is something every homeowner should know.

Understanding how the different parts of your chimney work together for maximum efficiency and safety is something every homeowner should know.

A chimney is not just a luxury or just part of a house’s aesthetic design; it is more of a need. There are essential things to learn because the presence of a chimney and fireplace can open the possibility of fires. If your house has a chimney, you have to know how it works as well as how to clean or inspect it to prevent such untoward accidents. In order to know these things, you must first be familiar with its anatomy. Do you know what it’s made of? It will be easier to address any concern regarding your chimney if you have the basic knowledge on its components.

There are six fundamental parts that make up a chimney:

1. Chimney Crown – This protects your chimney from water leaks in small areas. This is important because it can affect the performance of your chimney. The bricks that make a chimney must be protected to assure that there are no leaks and the mortar element will not deteriorate.

2. Flue – This part serves as a passageway for the smoke to come out into the open. It also has a specific area where the smoke is allowed to come in and out of.

3. Flue Lining – This makes sure that flue is properly held together. This also ensures that there is a minimal amount of dangerous debris that will accumulate.

4. Smoke Chamber – The purpose of this is to conduct the compression of some of the materials from combustion into a much smaller area so as not to cause a repercussion. Using slope walls will contribute to this as well.

5. Chimney Damper – These are lever activated doors if you have an automated chimney. They are closed when the other three seasons are fast approaching and are open once the winter season kicks in. This should be maintained throughout the entire year.

6. Smoke Shelf – This is located behind the chimney damper. It performs the duty of catching free falling debris and raindrops. This helps in the alteration of huge amounts of water into the area of the chimney.

These are the basic parts of a chimney. Like any other man-made infrastructure, it has it flaws and shortcomings. It may get damaged due to many factors. Perhaps it is already old, perhaps it’s overused, or perhaps you didn’t use the right kind of materials to burn. Another reason could be because you didn’t maintain it throughout the years. This is the reason why you have to constantly have it inspected. There might be need for it to be repaired. Companies like Aelite Chimney Specialties, provide the best services to fix, repair, and solve all your chimney frustrations. They are definitely the ones to call if you want to experience a whole new level of service.

Does Your Chimney Have Mold?

Mold in Chimney

Any trapped moisture in your home could be growing mold and deteriorating the quality of air in your home. Any mold growing in your home is serious and should be detected and removed immediately. Mold can produce respiratory problems and even some long term health effects. One of the biggest reasons for moisture or water entering the home is the most exposed to the elements structure in your home – your chimney.

Anytime moisture is trapped in your chimney, it provides a breeding ground for mold.

Anytime moisture is trapped in your chimney, it provides a breeding ground for mold.

Detecting Mold

Mold is usually detected first by discoloration of ceilings and walls and can vary in color from white, black, or green. Fungi spores will also have a musty odor that is quite unpleasant. Cracks in paint or peeling might also appear around walls where mold is present. A white crystal like powder substance might also appear on bricks or mortar that does not give off an odor that is called efflorescence. Although this substance is NOT mold and mostly harmless, it IS and indicator of water leaks. If any discoloration around the mortar and bricks of the chimney, an inspection is recommended by a chimney professional, especially if water leaks or mold are suspected.

Mold and Health Problems

Exposure to mold can cause serious health problems including respiratory problems as well as nasal and sinus congestion. In a few instances, some might have allergic reaction to mold that results in headaches, cough, and irritation from the skin or throat. These symptoms might  be an indicator of mold in the home if not already detected. Seek a physician immediately if any negative reactions to exposure to mold occur.

Causes of Mold

Trapped moisture is always the cause of growing mold, but the million dollar question is where is the moisture getting in? It is not always easy to detect, but water always follows the path of least resistance. Professionals look for cracks, and a popular area for water to leak in is the flashing or area where the chimney is attached to the roof. Weathering and exposure to the elements of rain and snow can cause the flashing to develop cracks creating an area for moisture to get in the home. Whatever the reason, trapped moisture can cause mold to spread to the walls and ceilings, where it is the most difficult to treat and clean up.

Cleaning Up Mold

Cleaning mold is a dangerous job because of the risk of exposure to the toxic mold spores and should be done by a professional or with the utmost protection from skin, eyes, and lungs. Detection and fixing of the leak where the water is entering the home should be done first before cleaning mold. Making sure there are no leaks ensures clean up will only have to be done once. Water and a non-ammonia soap or detergent is all that is required to clean mold. After cleaning, the area should also be treated with a mild solution of water and bleach to completely disinfect the area.

Preventing Mold

In most cases, if a leak is fixed mold will stop growing. Keeping a dry home within 40-60 percent also keeps any type of mold growing. This can be done by using dehumidifiers if necessary in higher humidity climates. Never use carpet in bathrooms or basements and use mold repellent paint.

Keeping you home free from mold will keep you and your family healthy as well as protect your house for many years.