The Nitty-Gritty of Your Chimney

10/16/2018

ChimneyIf your roof has a chimney, then it is susceptible to unique forms of damage and decline. The main reason for this is because the points where your chimney and roof meet form sharp angles or valleys where water can seep in if your roof wasn't built correctly.

 

Whether your current home has a chimney or you'd like to buy a home someday that does, here's what you need to know about chimneys and your roof...

 

Chimneys and flashing

Because of the valleys a chimney creates, flashing serves as an added barrier that protects this vulnerable area from water damage. Flashing is most commonly made of aluminum, but sometimes it's made of copper.

 

Layers of flashing

The first layer of flashing is installed beneath the shingles and partially up the chimney on all four sides. For added protection, a second layer of flashing, called counter flashing, is applied back over the portion that covers the chimney and its pieces are woven in with the shingles. 

 

Chimneys and crickets

For chimney's that are 30 inches wide or more, a cricket is installed on the upper back side. The purpose of the cricket is to remove the valley created by the chimney so that water flows down the sides of the chimney instead of puddling at the top. This video offers a helpful visual for how a cricket works.

 

Cricket and flashing repairs

A common flashing problem is that the flashing pulls away from the roof. If this problem is addressed early, it can be fixed with caulking. However, if you wait too long, the flashing will pull away to the point of causing a leak, and it will need to be replaced.

 

As for crickets, if your cricket is in poor condition, it will fail to properly push water down your roof, causing puddles to form. Puddles on your roof eventually result in leaks. Flashing and cricket problems are not repairs you can afford to delay.

 

A roof inspection for your chimney

With the many mechanical challenges that a chimney presents for your roof, it's especially important to get your roof inspected regularly. It also means that the process of replacing your roof should be handled with utmost care and expertise in order to prevent leaks and premature repairs. Click on the banner below to schedule your roof inspection today!

 

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Author

Derek Joye has been roofing homes and businesses in the Midlands for over 10 years.