Flue liners serve as the most important instrument ensuring a safe environment for the fireplace and the heating flue to work effectively. Not only does the liner provide a passage for the harmful gasses to exit but also protects the chimney walls from corrosion and heat. However, with time, flue liners tend to develop cracks. So, let’s take a look into how you can identify them and perform chimney repair or reline the chimney before it gets out of hand.
What Are The Common Causes Of Damaged Flue Liners?
The common causes of damaged flue liners is improper construction or the deterioration caused by gas, oil, and weather. Plus, settling cracks can also damage the flue liners. Even though you cannot prevent the flue liner from deteriorating, you can make sure they are properly inspected and cleaned to prevent serious consequences down the road.
Keep in mind that your gas or wood-burning fireplace produces harmful gasses as a byproduct of the wood that is burning. Therefore, these gasses need to exit. If for some reason, these gasses begin entering your house, you and your loved ones can be in serious danger.
How To Know That Your Flue Liner Is Damaged?
Mostly, homeowners are not even aware of the fact that their flue liner is damaged or cracked. The reason is that the cracks tend to be so small that they cannot be spotted or identified by an amateur. Therefore, the best way around this is to consult an expert who will thoroughly inspect the flue liner and help fix the issue, if there is any.
Then again, it is equally important that you keep your chimney clean. Creosote buildup can be hazardous to your family members and can also spark fires. There have been many incidents in the past where people have suffered serious burns and damage to their properties just because they underestimated the maintenance of the chimneys.
How Is A Damaged Flue Liner Repaired?
If you do not have a stainless-steel flue liner at the moment, you should get one. It is the most cost-effective and durable approach to replacing your existing flue liner. Unfortunately, flue liners cannot be repaired. So, an expert will take measurements of your chimney to make sure the liner fits properly.
Moreover, all stainless-steel flue liners should be UL listed. This is to make sure that they last long without problems.
How Do I Know My Chimney Is Damaged?
If your chimney happens to be damaged, chances are that you will need to replace the flue liner as well. To determine the condition of your chimney, you should check the mortar joints. Damaged mortar joints allow moisture to enter and further damage the lifespan of the chimney. So, if that is the case, get the mortar joints repaired immediately.
Next, is spalling bricks. Spalling occurs when moisture or water penetrates natural stone, brick, or concrete and forces the masonry’s surface to flake or peel off. In some cases, the salt also pushes outward from the inside and leads to spalling. To spot and identify spalling, look for masonry falling from the chimney. Repairing spalling bricks will help prevent the destruction of the chimney structure, which costs a lot more.
How Often Should I Get My Chimney Maintained And Inspected?
The maintenance and cleaning of your chimney should take place at least once a year or more depending on the usage. During the winter season, you should inspect your chimney once a week or two weeks to make sure there is no creosote accumulation inside.
The reason is that the buildup can be easily removed in the initial stages. But if it is ignored, the accumulation will reach a point where you will need to call in an expert for removal.
And during the summer season, when the fireplace is not used, make sure to cover it properly to prevent rats, birds, and other creatures from taking accommodation.
To sum it up, it is not necessary that flue liner cracks are always visible. Sometimes, they are but you cannot spot them with your naked eye. However, you can easily prevent and fix the issues before they turn serious by maintaining and cleaning the chimney. And make sure to connect with chimney relining services Columbia MD for inspection and flue liner installation.