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It Is a Great Time for Exterior Chimney Repairs

After a long, cold winter, we are all definitely ready for spring. Here in the Chicago area, Aelite Chimney Specialties normally spends a lot of time in the spring repairing winter-related damage to the exteriors of chimneys. From water leaks to damaged chimney caps to masonry problems, winter can be very destructive to a chimney. Spring is a great time to take care of these repairs, and you do not want to delay fixing winter-related chimney damage. We would like to tell you about some common post-winter chimney repairs and how our certified and experienced chimney technicians can take care of this work.

External Chimney Repairs - Chicago IL - Aelite

Water Leaks

Causing potentially hundreds to thousands of dollars in chimney damage, water leaks are a chimney’s number 1 problem. After a cold winter with below-freezing temperatures, we often see leaks caused by spalling, which is the breaking off and chipping of bricks and mortar due to trapped moisture freezing and expanding within the masonry materials. Water leaks can damage the interior of your home, cause a possible mold issue, and deteriorate the structure of your chimney. These leaks can be hard to locate, so call Aelite Chimney Specialties to schedule a professional chimney inspection to determine exactly what is causing them. Certain signs of leaks do exist, and they include:

  • plants growing in cracks in the mortar
  • cracking and crumbling in the bricks and/or mortar
  • missing bricks and pieces of mortar
  • rusty stains
  • brick discoloration
  • water in the fireplace
  • damp odors

Once Aelite Chimney Specialties locates the location of the water leaks, we will repair the leaks and prevent them from reoccurring by waterproofing your chimney and/or customizing the flashing.

Masonry Fireplace Damage

These classic chimneys are a bit more elaborate and require different types of maintenance, but Aelite Chimney Specialties has years of experience in repairing masonry chimneys and is ready to help you check these jobs off your repair list:

  • crown repair – Your crown is the chimney cap of your masonry chimney and can become cracked during the winter during extremely cold spells. We can repair cracks in your chimney crown or even construct a new custom-sized crown to fit your chimney perfectly.
  • repointing/tuckpointing – When the bricks and mortar of your chimney are crumbling and falling apart due to deteriorating joints from spalling and water damage, we can repair (or rebuild, if necessary) your chimney using these masonry techniques.

If you have noticed any problems from the past winter, contact Aelite Chimney Specialties as soon as possible. We are happy to resolve any chimney issues you may have.

By Nick Wagner | Tagged with: Tags: , , , | Comments Off on It Is a Great Time for Exterior Chimney Repairs

Help! My Fireplace Stinks!

Don't let your family suffer the unbearable smell that's coming from your fireplace. Do something about it.

Don’t let your family suffer the unbearable smell that’s coming from your fireplace. Do something about it.

Your home is a place of comfort, safety, relaxation and enjoyment. But how can you possibly feel and experience this when there’s an annoying and unpleasant stench lingering in your humble abode? From its smell, you trace its origins back to the fireplace. What can you do about it? How can you get rid of that horrible smell?

We from Aelite Chimney Specialties Incorporated are more than willing to help you solve that problem. We are professionals duly certified by the Chimney Safety Institute of America or the CSIA and the National Fireplace Institute (NFI). We will discuss with you what we can do about your stinky fireplace.

What causes a stinky fireplace?

A stinky fireplace is caused mainly by water that leaks inside your chimney during rainy days and after winter when the snow starts to melt. Water can come in from all sorts of places like the brick walls and the chimney opening. According to the CSIA, water is the number one enemy of chimneys. Why? This is because it can create numerous problems that have such a big effect on the structure of your fireplace and chimney as well as the health of everyone in the house. For example, water that is already inside the chimney will create mold that can compromise your health. Aside from mold, when your fireplace becomes stinky, it’s likely that the water and the toxic chemicals from inside have already mixed.

Another cause for a stinky fireplace is a drafty chimney. This occurs due to obstructions (creosote, animals, debris) negative air pressure, and burning unseasoned wood. Instead of letting the smoke out via the chimney flue, the smoke stays inside.

A stinky fireplace can also be caused by obstructions. A common reason for blockages is the presence of animals. They could be leaving their dirt in your chimney, or perhaps an animal could have died in there. Another reason for blockages could be debris, branches, leaves and other objects.

How can I prevent it?

The best way to prevent this is to first have your fireplace and chimney inspected so that necessary repairs and cleaning can be done. Also, it’s good to have your chimney waterproofed. This is done by putting a waterproofing sealant in between the bricks especially those that are starting to have cracks so that water cannot enter in. Lastly, have a chimney cap installed. This is placed in the chimney opening. It will protect the inside thus preventing water to enter your chimney and your fireplace. Having a chimney cap is the ultimate solution to this since that it’s the number one defense system against any kind of intrusion.

We have been working in this industry for over fifteen years now and we would really like you to be part of our big family. We want you to experience the best kind of service that you deserve. Say goodbye to your stinky fireplace and say hello to a toxic-free, good-smelling fireplace!