Average Cost Of Chimney Flashing Repair – Cost To Repair Flashing Around Chimney
Your chimney flashing is undoubtedly one of the most important parts of your chimney, and by extension, your home. It keeps the chimney stack secured to your roof and keeps the overall integrity of your chimney system and flue intact – and with the flue being the hardest working part of your chimney, it is important to ensure that all components are secured as they should be.
What are the parts of a chimney?
First, let’s look at the different parts of a chimney in order to fully understand what goes on behind that smokey chamber that keeps your home free from poisonous smoke and gases whenever you put the fireplace on.
First, we have the chimney crown at the very top of the chimney system – this is a sloped piece of masonry that keeps moisture from pooling at the top of your chimney system – and it’s well worth remembering that moisture and chimneys don’t mix together very well.
Next, the chimney stack itself, which is typically the exposed brick exterior of your chimney unit itself. This is usually made using traditional masonry methods like brick and mortar, and what this does is to protect the part that is inside it – which we will cover next.
The flue is the hardest working part of the chimney system. It is the interior of the chimney, and is responsible for sucking out the combustion gases from the fireplace and directing it upwards to flow out of the chimney and away from the home. This means that it is faced with extreme high and low temperatures every day when in use, especially in the wintertime, and it has to be regularly swept in order to avoid any blockage that may cause the toxic combustion gases to seep into your home instead, endangering the safety and health of you and your family. So when they talk about chimney sweeping, this is what it actually means.
What can go wrong with your chimney?
Next, let’s explore the different problems homeowners with chimneys might face throughout the lifetime of the chimney.
- Chimney flue problems
The inside part which is the chimney flue is an important part of the chimney system, and it also can be quite expensive. It is commonly made in tiles, which can crack due to the high heat and pressure and freezing temperature cycles it faces throughout the seasons. These cracked tiles can be repaired, however it is only a temporary solution, and the best long-term repair is to replace it altogether when it starts showing any signs of malfunction.
- Chimney crown cracking
Because of the exposure to high heat and freezing temperatures repeatedly, the chimney crown is prone to expansion and contraction, due in no small part to the temperature fluctuation. This forms cracks on the crown, which allows dangerous carbon monoxide or even embers from the fire down below to get out of the chimney and onto the roof. Untreated chimney crown issues are dangerous and are known to lead to structural damages which will significantly increase the risk of fire in cases where the fireplace is used very often.
- Chimney brick weakening
Weakened masonry happens over time and exposure to the elements, and is typically maintained by reinforcing the integrity of the mortar – which is softer than brick – with some fresh new mortar in a process called repointing. Any significant cracks in the brickwork however, and that particular area might need to be removed and rebuilt with new brick and mortar. In most cases, a full tear down and rebuild is what happens when the exterior chimney bricks are starting to face major wear and tear.
- Chimney flashing leaking
The flashing is what connects your exterior chimney to your roof – this is a waterproof seal that is found at the joint point of the base of your exposed chimney and your roof. It prevents any moisture from penetrating into the flue and chimney unit overall. It can be made out of different materials, with common ones being aluminum and steel, with less common ones being copper (due to its high cost) and vinyl or PVC (which isn’t as strong as the other materials).
Why chimney flashing is important?
Your chimney flashing can become a major cause of problems if any issues are not fixed right away. This is due to the fact that the chimney flashing is the main defence point against moisture from the elements from entering into your chimney system. And because moisture has the ability to go wherever it wants, it can result in the structural integrity around your roof and attic, including walls, to be ridden with moisture and causing water damage – which is a pain to repair and can lead to some serious issues in the long run, like weakened walls, ceiling or roof which can break off unexpectedly!
What is the average cost of chimney flashing repair?
Typically you will expect to pay around $15 to $25 per linear foot of leadwork during a chimney flashing repair. This price includes the labor of removing the old, faulty flashing, installing the new flashing and the caulking process to seal the new flashing in place. In total, set aside around $300 to $600 for a full flashing replacement for your chimney.
Can I fix my own chimney flashing?
When it comes to chimney flashing repairs, the job is best left to the professionals. Even the most experienced handyman will likely not have the necessary tools and specialized equipment required and knowledge required to install or repair chimney flashing, which is a skill that takes years to master and is typically a job for highly experienced mason workers that have done hundreds of the same jobs to perfect their craft.