A wood fire place can be an amazing accent to your home. My wife absolutely loves ours and it is utilized frequently. One very important, but often overlooked part of a wood burning fireplace is the chimney crown. This is the cement top to the chimney. It’s typically out of sight and out of mind , so maintenance is not often performed like it is on other parts of the home. Often I find a chimney crown that is cracking and deteriorating. If the crown cracks and/or deteriorates, this can allow water to enter your chimney and get behind the bricks.
Water infiltration is the number one enemy to a house. Chimneys are often a point of water infiltration to a roof. It is always best to get have a chimney sweep check your chimney, flue, and crown at least once a year.
Here is a chimney crown I found during a recent inspection. The crown is cracking and deteriorating. Unfortunately, the crown was not repaired correctly. Someone used a sealer to try to stop moisture from entering the chimney. Also the clay flue liner was cracked. A chimney sweep should be contacted for a correct fix!
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