Your chimney goes through a lot on a daily basis. Even if you’re not burning wood to keep your place warm, it’s still subjected to natural wear and tear, and frequently, to harsh weather conditions as well. Over time, the surface of the masonry material used for your chimney will chip away and be eventually lost. This process is called spalling — an occurrence that immediately demands attention from a chimney repair Fairfax VA expert.
Why Spalling Occurs
Water is one, if not the biggest enemy of your masonry chimney. If water is absorbed into the brick and mortar of your chimney during the wintertime, it will get trapped there, freeze, and then expand. Once the temperature increases, the frozen water will thaw and the expansion will cause the masonry to break.
However, considering that you’ve gotten your chimney waterproofed and you’re able to maintain it regularly, there are still other reasons why your masonry chimney can still break. One is if your chimney has been badly built. Or two, if the masonry products used are porous, soft or made not of the highest quality.
The Consequences of Spalling
There are different dangers associated with a spalling masonry chimney — dangers that can lead to more expensive damages if you fail to have it addressed by a chimney repair Fairfax VA expert.
It can affect your chimney’s structural integrity. The structural soundness of your chimney is one of the vital things that will be compromised once you encounter spalling. Once the masonry products start to chip away, they can create holes and cracks where water and other elements can seep into. When not fixed, they can even cause your whole chimney to fall down.
Falling bricks and mortar can cause injury. Apart from structure-related issues, you’d also have the risk of hurting yourself, your loved ones, and random bystanders because of the falling bricks and mortar. As your chimney is located in the roof, it can also damage it as well as the flashing.
You are more likely to encounter chimney fires. Because of spalling, your chimney might not be able to contain and funnel out heat and smoke like how it normally would. The weaknesses caused by this phenomenon in your chimney thus consequently increases the risk of chimney fires.
What You Need To Do
One of the first steps you need to accomplish is having your chimney assessed. How bad is the damage caused by the spalling? How much of your chimney’s structure has it affected already?
Once you’ve analyzed the issue, and if the damage is not that serious, you can try to solve it on your own by replacing the damaged bricks and applying new mortar correctly. However, since the actual replacement of the bricks can be quite tricky, it’s still best to endorse the job to a chimney repair Fairfax VA expert.
These professionals, equipped with the right tools and know-how, can address the spalling in a more cost-efficient way — from the inspection to the actual fixing of the damages and installation of new bricks and mortars. While at it, they can even detect other chimney-related issues and have them fixed accordingly.
If you need you are expecting issues with your chimney and need it inspected or if you need chimney repair Fairfax VA, contact us today at JCS Home Services.