3 Signs You Need to Repair Your Chimney ASAP

by Renee Marie Jordan 01/09/2022

Unlike some home repair issues, the gradual decline of a chimney often goes unnoticed for years. During this period of modest disrepair, a wide range of structural problems and fire risks can arise. Even small gaps between brick layers create an opening for unwelcome pests. Here are three telltale signs your chimney may require repair.

1: Check for Loose or Crumbling Mortar

Inspect the exterior of your chimney on a reasonably sunny day. If you see spaces where the mortar has fallen away, chances are at least minor repairs are required. Even if everything appears visually sound, run a screwdriver over the pointing and check for loose and crumbling mortar. The mortar between a chimney's bricks typically requires tuckpointing every 10-15 years. But severe weather and other factors can speed up the decline.

2: Do You Still Have a Viable Chimney Cap?

High winds and hard impacts sometimes eliminate chimney caps altogether. Houses with damaged caps often remain in place even though they don't necessarily deter water penetrations or pests.

Checking your cap status doesn't require taking a risky hike up a steep ladder. Homeowners can stand at a safe distance and see whether it's still there and evaluate its condition.

3: Does Your Chimney Show White Staining?

Ranked as the most unnoticed telltale sign that a chimney needs immediate repairs involves efflorescence or "White Staining." The exterior usually has spots of white that may run along with the mortar or jump across a few layers of bricks.

White staining often gets disregarded as normal aging by many homeowners. However, it's a damaging sign that natural salts in the mortar are being forced to the surface. The culprit is moisture getting deep into the chimney and reducing its strength. If you have white staining, consider scheduling a chimney inspection.

A well-constructed and maintained chimney can last for more than a century. By recognizing the telltale signs that repairs are needed, homeowners can avoid peripheral damage, pest infestations, fire and the high cost of a replacement.

About the Author
Author

Renee Marie Jordan

Renee Marie Jordan is a Third Generation Realtor®, who started out her career in residential lending. Jordan Real Estate was established by her grandmother, Jean Kotwitz, who was one of the first female real estate brokers in Solano County! The company was then passed down to her mother, Diane Jordan, over 40 years ago. Renee Marie then took over the company 24 years ago and in 2015 joined forces with RE/MAX Gold.   

Regarded as one of Northern California’s most dependable brokers, Renee Marie has gained industry respect for creating a successful brokerage company. Renee Marie’s unique blend of negotiating expertise, innovative thinking and belief that the client always comes first, has resulted in an extensive client base with many satisfied homeowners. Renee Marie specializes in residential sales, first time buyers, short sale properties, luxury properties, investment properties, foreclosures, 1031 exchanges, and has been the HUD specialist for Solano County since 2009.   

Renee Marie gets to the heart of her clients wants and needs. She attributes a great deal of her success to the many referrals she receives from clients who appreciate the care and thoughtfulness she puts into every transaction. Friends and family members can count on the same excellent service when they are referred to Renee Marie.