Chimney Flue Liner Damage & Repair Options

For a chimney to function effectively there needs to be a lot of maintenance work over the period of its lifespan. This repair or maintenance covers different parts of the system.

This article will be looking at one of these important parts; the chimney liner repair.

Here is a guide detailing why you need a liner installed.

What Are Chimney Flue Liners

It’s difficult to know what chimney liner repair is all about without knowing what chimney liners are.

This is a critical component of the chimney that helps protect your home from accidental fires. It limits heat transfer to combustible framing which ensures fires never break out.

With chimney liners, installing new stoves or replacing older fireplaces is possible with fewer complications resulting. In other words, chimney liners give modern appliances the appropriate-sized flue.

With chimney liners, you get the needed protection from damage to masonry.

Damage to masonry is common for chimneys with faulty liners. In such situations, the corrosive by-products from combustion gradually erode your mortar joints which result in heat transfer to nearby combustible materials.

  • Types of Chimney Liners

Chimney liners come in different types. These are also made of different materials, each of which protects a fire outbreak from happening. The three types of chimney liners are; cast-in-place liners, clay tile liners, and metal flue liners.

The most popular among these three types are metal flue liners. These offer a wide range of benefits including high corrosion resistance.

Why You Need A Chimney Liner Repair

Carrying out maintenance work on your chimney from time to time is very important. Without such repair, your liner deteriorates without your knowing.

As such, there must be scheduled inspections to ascertain the condition of the liner.

There are several reasons why you need a chimney liner repair. These include deteriorated or eroded clay mortar, worn or damaged liners, cracked flue tiles or cracked clay liners, upgrades for older chimneys made without chimney liners, and spalling or flaking of clay on liner walls.

Additional reasons why you may need a chimney liner repair include gaps between the flue tiles, and damage to the chimney caused by lightning strikes, water, or fires. Another reason includes the need to have a properly sized chimney for new appliances.

All of the above reasons for a chimney repair are important and must be properly assessed to make a decision.

Causes of Chimney Liner Damage

Every state of disrepair concerning your chimney liner is due to several causes.

Knowing these common causes enables you to take appropriate action to limit them in the future. These common causes include deterioration due to the acidic nature of fossil fuels oil and gas. Weather action also contributes to chimney liner damage.

Additional causes include settling cracks, improper construction, and the wrong sized lining for an appliance.

In the case of using an appliance that doesn’t perfectly fit with your lining, it results in the buildup of creosote. This; mixed with moisture speeds up the deterioration of your chimney liner.

Does a Chimney Liner Show Signs of Damage?

This vital component of your chimney system is located within and is out of sight. This poses a challenge as it cannot be seen or visually inspected. Plus, liners are built to last for significant periods of time.

As a matter of fact, liners have a lifespan of about 50 years or more.

The problem posed here has to do with the condition of the chimney liner when you moved in. Several occupants may have come and gone. This creates the possibility of your chimney liner exceeding its lifespan. There’s also the possibility of infrequent inspection.

So, there are maybe no clear signs of chimney liner damage.

If you’re lucky enough, you may find broken masonry in your fireplace. If this is seen, it could be due to loosened mortar or corrosive action mentioned earlier.

This signals your chimney liner’s state of disrepair.

How To Repair A Chimney Liner

This maintenance task should only be handled by experienced professionals. When you suspect a chimney liner problem and call a chimney repair service, the process begins with an inspection of the condition of your liner.

Specialized tools are used to inspect every inch of the chimney liner. This is a painstaking process that requires all the expertise you can find. Having detected the problem, a decision will have to be made.

Such decisions may require a chimney liner repair (if the condition of the chimney liner isn’t so bad) or its total replacement. In the case of a chimney replacement, it won’t make sense to fix the damage because it’s severe and won’t get back to full functioning when repaired.

Not All Chimney Liners can be Fixed

Depending on the material your chimney liner is made of (that is whether cement, clay, or tiles, etc), repair may only be possible depending on the scale of damage.

Minor chimney liner problems like replacing a few tiles or fixing a small crack are possible.

However, major damage to your chimney liner may require a teardown of the chimney to have it fixed. This isn’t a cost-effective strategy to even consider as it ends up costing you far more than it would install a new chimney liner.

The Cost Factor

Since we’ve implied the adoption of a cost-effective strategy for chimney liner repairs, it’s necessary to focus on the cost factor. The chimney repair cost will depend on a myriad of factors.

These range from the type of liner material, size, chimney condition, and shape.

All these factors contribute to determining the eventual cost of a chimney liner replacement. Chimney repair services may also have competitive pricing for all chimney-related jobs.

Delaying A Chimney Liner Repair

Information on periodic or yearly chimney inspections will be relayed to you.

Now, such reports may identify a chimney liner problem that needs to be resolved as soon as possible. Delaying this repair process for whatever reason serves to compound the problem.

You end up increasing the risk of a chimney fire.

Additional problems include the possibility of exposure to carbon monoxide poisoning. These are situations you’d rather avoid.

Chimney liner repair as discussed above involves a whole lot of processes.

The state of this important chimney component must be checked regularly. Yearly inspections are needed to determine the condition of the liner and detect problems in need of repairs.

Doing this keeps your liner in the best state which improves your chimney’s overall performance.

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