Dangers of Spalling
A typical problem we notice at the close of winter? The appearance of cracking, crumbling, and falling masonry. This occurrence is a common occurrence when moisture has penetrated the masonry. When water is allowed to penetrate the masonry it experiences a freeze/thaw cycle that is especially damaging. The water freezes, expanding and damaging the brick and mortar. Afterwards, it then thaws, moving further into the masonry, and repeats the process. Spalling causes a host of problems for your chimney. It can and should be repaired as soon as possible.
- Structural Problems.
Masonry joints can become riddled with holes and cracks, compromising the structural soundness of the chimney.
- Falling Bricks and Mortar.
As the mortar recedes, cracks, and falls out of the masonry, it can lead to bricks falling. This can damage the roof and flashing. It can also fall from a steep roof, possibly injuring bystanders.
- Water Damage.
Spalling masonry can create cracks and holes. These allow even more water into the chimney. Consequently, not only damaging the masonry itself, but causing rust, stains, deterioration, and water leaks throughout the entire system. A chimney leak lowers the chimney’s efficiency, costing you more money, fuel, and raising fire risk.
What is Tuckpointing?
At Black Moose Chimney we see spalling often. It’s one of the more common occurrences that we can repair through tuckpointing, or repointing. Tuckpointing is a tedious job in which a chimney sweep removes the damaged masonry brick by brick, replacing it with new mortar. This should only be completed by an experienced chimney sweep because if done improperly it can add to the problem. The new mortar must be matched to the old mortar in consistency, strength, and color or it ends up weaker than before. When done correctly, the chimney looks as good as new and there is no hint of past damage or a repair.
Fixing the Whole Problem
At Black Moose we don’t only fix the problem, but we repair the damage. It’s important to repair water damage before it worsens. When water mingles with soot it becomes highly corrosive to the surfaces of the chimney. For instance, your chimney sweep can assess the liner, firebox, and various chimney parts to insure it is at its best. Black Moose relines chimneys with HeatShield® technology to give you a liner that is good as new, without having to replace it completely. We also offer an extensive menu of masonry repair services to restore your entire system to full function, with the highest level of safety and efficiency.
Have you noticed spalling masonry? If you have concerns that your chimney is leaking and your masonry is the culprit, don’t hesitate to call Black Moose Chimney and Stove today at 603.525.7905.