From Independence, MN, to Lake, Elmo, MN, and Blaine, MN, to Bloomington, MN, and throughout the Twin Cities area, a chimney, and fireplace add both charm and value to a home. And at some point, usually when you least expect it, your chimney or fireplace will eventually experience several problems common in the upper Midwest, such as water leaks or obstructions from animals and flammable creosote build-up. Timely action is vital when addressing these common problems with your chimney, fireplace, and venting system. Doing so will help avoid more severe damage, saving you time and money in the long run.
Common Chimney & Fireplace Problems in the Twin Cities
Your chimney is an important structure attached to your home, and it needs proper maintenance to prevent fires and other common problems. However, chimneys and fireplaces can develop issues due to weather, creosote build-up, rust, etc., primarily when not adequately maintained. Here are 5 of the most common chimney and fireplace problems that Minnesotans will want to avoid:
Water leaking in your chimney is not only annoying, but it can also be dangerous. Water might leak into your chimney and fireplace for a few different reasons. One possibility is that the chimney flashing (the metal strip that seals the connection between the chimney and roof) is damaged. Another common problem is that the chimney cap or chase cover - the metal cover at the top - needs to be fixed or replaced. And finally, it's also possible that the bricks or mortar of the chimney itself are damaged, allowing water to seep through the gaps in the joints. Therefore, taking immediate action to mitigate a leaky chimney is essential.
Efflorescence (White Stain)
Chimneys in Minneapolis, St. Paul, and the upper Midwest commonly develop a white discoloration, called efflorescence, on their exterior masonry surfaces. This blanching of the bricks is from salts in the clay brickwork rising to the surface due to excess moisture. It’s the result of water seeping deep into the brick material. Unfortunately, washing the chimney won't eliminate the efflorescence because the stain will recur each time the masonry gets wet and dries out in sunlight. Therefore, scheduling a chimney inspection is vital to keep your chimney structurally sound and prevent further damage.
A rusty chimney is one of the most common problems for Minneapolis – St. Paul homeowners. A few factors figure into the rust equation, and it's important to be aware of them so you can take steps to prevent it from occurring in your chimney. One of the most common causes of a rusty chimney is water damage. If your chimney is constantly exposed to moisture from rain or snow, it's more likely to develop rust. For this reason, we recommend chimney waterproofing after making masonry repairs. Another common cause of chimney rust is exposure to road salt on winter roads and driveways. Call Twin City Fireplace to avoid extensive water damage to your chimney, vents, and attached heating appliances when you see rust.
A smoky chimney is a common problem, especially in the frigid winter months. It can be due to draft problems, a damper that isn’t open all the way, or a blockage in your venting system. If you have a wood-burning fireplace, it's essential to ensure the wood is dry or seasoned. Burning unseasoned or “green” firewood creates a lot of smoke. Our chimney and masonry specialists will be able to diagnose this common chimney problem and recommend the best solution for a smoke-free environment.
A smelly chimney is another common problem for Minnesotans in the Twin Cities. One common cause is a build-up of creosote, a substance that forms when burning wood and can collect on the walls of your chimney. Without regular chimney cleaning, creosote, soot, animal droppings, and decaying leaves and debris make your chimney very smelly.
How to Prevent Common Problems
A professional annual chimney inspection and cleaning is the best way to spot and fix common problems early. Otherwise, something as minor as a missing chimney cap or cracks in the crown can lead to more extensive damage and costlier repairs.
Greater Minneapolis – St. Paul homeowners trust Twin City Fireplace for fast and efficient repair of common chimney & fireplace problems in Hennepin County, Washington County, and the Twin Cities Area.
Professional Repair for Common Chimney Problems in Minneapolis – St. Paul, MN
Twin City Fireplace has an excellent reputation for providing Minnesotans with the top-quality, reliable, and professional repair of common chimney & fireplace problems, including individual brick replacement, chimney crown sealing, firebox rebuilding, tuckpointing, and more, in the Twin Cities area.
With showrooms in Edina and Woodbury, we serve customers in Chaska, MN; Bloomington, MN; St. Louis Park, MN; Wayzata, MN; and townships throughout the Twin Cities area. Call (952) 941-2685 Edina or (651) 204-0112 Woodbury to schedule a chimney inspection today!