Chimney damage from storms is likely to happen especially during the Chicagolands spring and summer months. As Chicagoland often experiences very heavy thunderstorms during summer, it’s important to keep up with your chimney’s maintenance. The howling of the wind, rain and even hail of a summer storm echoing through the chimney sounds eerie enough as it is. The aftermath of a bad storm on your chimney can be scarier than the storm itself! Neglecting chimney damage from storms can cause serious damage to your home which is expensive to fix.
Is your chimney showing signs of cracks or chalky white streaks on its mortar? Or possibly water marks or molding on the inside of your home? These are only a few signs that your chimney has experienced chimney damage from storms.
How a Storm Can Damage a Chimney
A storm with high winds, hail and rain will cause the most damage to a chimney. Heavy winds toss around debris, scraping the bricks of your chimney causing minor cracks that lead to larger cracks. Hail also speeds up the deterioration of the brick and mortar. It’s possible for lightning to strike your chimney, this will surely crack the chimney masonry. Minor or major cracks in the brick and mortar allow for water to seep through and cause interior chimney damage. Water leaks cause molding inside the home. Large cracks will eventually cause the collapse of the chimney.
4 Ways to Tell If Your Chimney Has Been Damaged by Storms
An inspection should be done on your chimney by a certified chimney professional at Superior Chimney. But there are some small signs of damage that you may notice on your chimney. Here’s what to look out for:
- Cracks on your chimney crown: The chimney crown is located on top of the whole masonry structure, and is made to keep water away from and out of the chimney. Cracks on the chimney crown let water seep through to the masonry, resulting in water damage.
- A tilted chimney cap: The small metal cap over the hole of your chimney is made to prevent animals, water and debris from entering your home. A strong storm can loosen or tear off the chimney cap.
- Loose flashing: Most brick and mortar chimneys have a metal flashing that protects the base of your chimney from water leakage. The flashing should be secured tightly between the roof and chimney. If you notice a gap between the flashing and roof, water is seeping into your chimney. Inside the home, signs of a loose flashing are mold and water marks on your home’s ceiling.
- Chalk white streaks: White streaks on the masonry are leaching salt deposits. They are discoloration of the bricks. It’s a sign that the masonry is absorbing water. The salt inside the bricks naturally are drawn to the surface when water is evaporating. The chimney should be inspected to determine where the water is leaking in and what damage there has occurred.
If you notice any of the above signs of chimney damage from storms, contact Superior Chimney today. We will help you determine the extent of the damage and the next steps to repair your chimney. Maintaining your chimney during the summer is important so that the chimney is not in bad condition before using it in the winter. Contact us today for a chimney inspection by calling 877-244-6349.