Santa's Friend Chimney Service

Santa's Friend Chimney Service Blog

Fix Up Your Chimney Before the Temperature Drops

You love your fireplace! It brings hours of comfort and happiness in the cooler winter weather. So, when you discover that your chimney is leaking, it is a cause for alarm. There are several reasons that leaks can occur. Also, it’s much easier to get these leaks fixed before it gets cold, rather than waiting until you’re wanting to use your fireplace. The first step to take when your chimney is leaking? Call Santa’s Friend Chimney Service. Their expert staff will inspect your fireplace and determine any problems, before the temperature drops.

Fix Up Your Chimney Before the Temperature Drops - Jackson MS - Santas Friend Chimney ServiceThe Problem Could Be Water

According to Chimney Safety Institute of America, weathering that occurs from exposure to outdoor elements, such as rain or sleet, can cause major problems for your brick or block masonry chimneys. And if you have a stone chimney, you’re not out of the woods! Stone chimneys take a lot of mortar to hold together, and that mortar is affected by precipitation.
Precipitation can eat away at the mortar, but a bigger culprit is the freeze/thaw cycle. During the freeze/thaw cycle, water seeps into the mortar between the bricks or stones, then freezes. Freezing water expands, which causes cracks to occur. This cycle continues throughout the cold, rainy season.

Cracked flashing can also cause leaks to occur. The flashing is the sheet metal that keeps the intersection between the chimney and the roof tight. This intersection is a likely place for leaks to occur. According to the This Old House website, the flashing leaks because it wasn’t properly installed in the first place. But even properly installed flashing wears down over time, and this can cause leaks to occur. The simplest solution to leaks caused by flashing issues? Stop them before they start. Have your chimney inspected on a regular basis by the experts at Santa’s Friend Chimney Service.

The Problems Water Causes

When the mortar between the bricks or stones breaks down, not only can the exterior of your chimney be damaged, but the interior can be damaged as well. According to the Chimney Safety Institute of America website, when your chimney leaks, several things can be damaged. This includes a deteriorating central heating system, stained chimney exterior, rusted damper assembly, and stained ceiling and walls. Consequently, these are just a few of the problems that might occur.

A Fix is on the Way

All of these problems are fixable. One way to make sure that those leaks are fixed is by waterproofing your chimney. Santa’s Friend Chimney Service offers waterproofing products that take care of the leaks, while allowing vapors formed from your fire to escape.

Probably the simplest solution for a leaky chimney? The addition of, or repair, to a chimney cap. This is an important part to the make-up of your chimney, because it can keep precipitation from getting in your chimney. Plus, many homes just flat out don’t have a chimney cap. A simple inspection can determine if a chimney cap is absent or in disrepair, and after that, it’s a quick fix.

Trust the experts at Santa’s Friend Chimney Service to take care of your leaky chimney, or any other service your chimney needs! Call 601-854-7563.

By Jim Robinson on November 17th, 2016 | Tagged with: Tags: , , | Leave a Comment

Make Your Masonry Repairs Before Winter

A brick chimney looks like a stalwart sentry watching over the horizon at the top of your house. It takes the brunt of all elements – baking sun, battering rain and wind, fluctuating temperatures, snow, and ice. A chimney gets no cover and no respite from the weather. Even though it remains standing and continues to do its job, it slowly breaks down and needs repair. Mississippi was hit hard this year with storms. So, to ward off any potential problems, get your chimney masonry checked out and repaired before the winter begins.

Make Your Masonry Repairs Before Winter - Jackson MS - Santas Friend Chimney ServiceMississippi Weather

Central Mississippi entertains a variety of weather patterns and brick chimney masonry. This masonry, which is made of sand, takes a beating that causes it to breakdown. This Process is called spalling. Weather is the worst enemy of this type of masonry. Beach lovers know that high tides and big storms wash away beaches and that is essentially what is happening to your chimney. The Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) warns that a neglected chimney can also be a safety hazard.

What Masonry Damage Looks Like

Spalling can look like several types of damage. It may be as dramatic as actual breakage or plain as cracks. There might also be flaking. These are all warning signs that your chimney is weakening. The expansion and contraction from temperature fluctuations serve to put stress on the structure. And according to CSIA, water penetration is its greatest enemy. Moisture will rust the metal portions of chimney and chip away at all the other components that make up brick masonry. Eventually, seepage will cause mildew and fungus, as well as odor that will infiltrate your home.

Types of Repairs

Repairing leaking chimneys, waterproofing, and relining are so ordinary in this area that if you haven’t needed maintenance done to your masonry, you are rare. Santa’s Friend Chimney Service technicians are specially trained and certified to rehabilitate your chimney so that it is safe and in working order. We will assess the damage and then sit down with you to discuss the best options. It may be a matter of repointing or rebuilding. Once the repairs are complete, you may want to consider waterproofing the chimney to avoid problems of moisture. The process creates a barrier between the masonry and the elements.

Don’t wait! You don’t want to learn during the winter that your masonry needs repairs. That means that in addition to the structural damage, you are uncomfortable as you try to stay warm and dry. Contact us at Santa’s Friend Chimney Service while the weather is still mild and let us help get you ready for winter.

By Jim Robinson on October 20th, 2016 | Tagged with: Tags: , , , | Leave a Comment

Why Chimney Flashing is so important

Every movie has its unsung heroes: those, who without them, the show would be incomplete. Yet few know about them. They aren’t glamorous or showy and are often unseen. Your home has these same behind-the-scenes essentials, and chimney flashing is one of them. It doesn’t sport the stature of the majestic chimney or the glamour of a fireplace, but flashing is a key component that keeps both of these stars looking good.

Why Chimney Flashing Is So Important Image - Jackson MS - Santa's Friend Chimney Service

Flashing: The unsung hero

The main job of flashing is to provide a waterproofing seal. When leaks occur in your home, the most common concern is that it’s a roof problem, but very often loose or missing flashing is the reason for a leak. Fortunately, it’s a very easy problem to solve. Flashing can become loose for a number of reasons. It could be the natural settling of your home or a breakdown in masonry around the flashing. Perhaps the roofing wasn’t installed well. Animals roosting on the roof may eventually disturb the flashing. It could also be that chimney flashing wasn’t fitted properly or completely. If the flashing is loose or missing and it isn’t addressed in a timely way, water will eventually make its way into your chimney. Frequent moisture infiltration aids in the breakdown of masonry.

A Simple Fix

So you see, the role of flashing is crucial in supporting your chimney. Chimney flashing should be installed in two parts, according to the American Society of Home Inspectors: the base flashing is installed on the roof around the chimney and the cap or counter flashing overlaps the base on the side of the chimney. The joints are caulked. This system seals out rain, snow, and other elements. If you notice water marks on your ceiling near your chimney, if you see or hear a flapping around the chimney, it could very well be you need to have the flashing repaired.

At Santa’s Friend Chimney Service, we’ll get up on the roof and look around and repair or replace the flashing so you don’t have unwanted moisture causing damage to your home. We will tell you what is really going on. We state in our Standards of Ethics and Business Practices that we won’t “manufacture problems”. Our customers know they can trust us, as shown by our 2011 and 2014 Angie’s List Super Service Awards. Our membership in the Chimney Safety Institute of America, as well as the National Chimney Sweep Guild, demonstrates our commitment to industry integrity and education. Contact us today by the online form or call 601-854-7563.

By Jim Robinson on September 23rd, 2016 | Tagged with: Tags: , , | Leave a Comment

Proper Chimney Waterproofing

Is your chimney ready to stand up to winter weather? One of the most common types of chimney damage, spalling occurs when the temperature drops below freezing. Water that has leaked into the bricks and mortar of your chimney will freeze and expand, and when the temperature warms up, the water thaws and causes the masonry materials to crack and break apart. Have you ever noticed how potholes always appear on the roads after an ice storm? That type of damage is also spalling damage, and if you have seen how large some potholes can be, you have an idea of how badly it can deteriorate the exterior of your chimney. At Santa’s Friend Chimney Service, we offer several ways to protect your chimney from water penetration damage. One way we can help to keep your chimney in one piece is waterproofing. We would like to tell you more about how water can damage your chimney as well as how waterproofing can prevent water from leaking into the bricks and mortar of your chimney.

Besides spalling, how else can water penetration damage my chimney?

Proper Chimney Waterproofing - Jackson MS - Santa's FriendThe Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) has famously said that water is the biggest enemy of masonry chimneys because of the amount of damage it can do when it leaks into chimneys. Spalling damage is most likely the most devastating type of water penetration damage because if left unrepaired, your chimney could possibly collapse! However, water leaks can do even more damage. The metal components of your chimney like the damper can deteriorate from rust corrosion and break. Any wood surrounding your chimney can rot. Your ceilings and walls can become stained and distorted from water leaking through the chimney. Preventing water penetration is crucial to protecting your chimney from damage and deterioration.

Are there other benefits to having my chimney waterproofed?

Although keeping your masonry chimney safe from water damage is well worth the cost of waterproofing, you will see other advantages from this service. An environmentally friendly formula that is 100% vapor permeable, the waterproofing agent we use is manufactured by Chimney Saver and comes with a 10-year warranty with our professional application. Waterproofing your chimney will also make it more resistant against mildew and fungus.

What can I expect from a waterproofing treatment from Santa’s Friend Chimney Service?

When our CSIA-certified chimney professionals arrive at your home, they will begin by seeing which type of waterproofing formula will work best for your chimney. After scrubbing and cleaning your bricks and mortar, your chimney will get a coating of the waterproofing formula to create a barrier that will protect your bricks and mortar from becoming deteriorated by spalling and other water penetration damage.

Don’t hesitate to protect your masonry chimney this winter. Contact us at Santa’s Friend Chimney Service to schedule an appointment for a waterproofing service before the temperature drops below freezing.

By Jim Robinson on November 25th, 2015 | Tagged with: Tags: , , , , , | Leave a Comment