Clay Chimney Flue Liners – Functions, Benefits, Tile Sizes, Fuel & Buying

Here we will be discussing clay liners for chimneys.

A chimney is a unit with several components all working as a system. These components include the chimney cap, crown, stack, flashing, roofline, masonry, flue, flue liner, and mantel.

Other components include the smoke chamber, the damper, throat, and smoke shelf. As expected, all components play key roles as it relates to functionality.

Clay Chimney Liner: Terra Cotta Tile Options

One of these components is under focus; the chimney liner. These liners are of three different types; cast-in-place chimney liners, metal chimney liners, and clay liners (also called clay tile liners).

The clay liner is what we’ll be discussing here.

All the information you need regarding its functionality and types among other details has been supplied right here.

Functions of the Clay Flue Tile

Irrespective of whether you have a clay liner, cast-in-place liner, or metal liner, all liners perform the same function. They serve as barriers between the flue and chimney walls.

The insulation provided helps ensure that exhaust gases are kept hot to allow for better venting.

At the same time, chimney walls are protected from heat and corrosion. A limited amount of heat reaches the walls which are important to help protect from damage due to heat.

Combustion byproducts are known to be corrosive and could easily deteriorate chimney walls when such walls aren’t protected.

The right clay liner size will keep wood-burning stoves from accumulating excessive creosote. To have a better idea about the functions of clay liners, let’s consider the following;

  • Prevention of Heat Transfer

Studies and tests conducted by the National Bureau of Standards found that heat transfer problem were most common with unlined chimneys.

As part of their findings, it was found that heat transfer was rapid that woodwork in adjacent areas easily ignited within a short period (3 minutes).

With a clay liner in place, such problems were adequately addressed as such heat transfer was effectively contained. The life expectancy of the clay liner is mostly between 30 to 50 years for well-lined chimneys.

  • Protection from Caustic Byproducts

During combustion, several byproducts are released that are caustic. These could cause harm or corrode the chimney structure when they come in contact with mortar joints.

There’s also the risk of exposure to carbon monoxide which could leak in through cracks.

A clay liner, like other liner types, solves this problem by protecting masonry from corrosion due to combustion byproducts.

  • Enhancing Efficiency

Efficiency is generally enhanced when a clay liner is installed for wood-burning chimneys. Of course, such clay liners must be of the right size to properly fit the chimney.

Common issues relating to creosote accumulation in woodstoves are eliminated.

Are Clay Liners Best Used with Certain Fuel Types?

A lot of discussions have been had about the best liner type for particular fuels. This is an important area that needs to be looked at with the right answers provided.

Clay chimney liners are most ideal for wood fuels. Experience has shown that using the same for other fuels like gas or oil heating systems has several disadvantages.

While this is true, other types of chimney liners like metal and cast-in-place liners will serve all fuel types. In other words, both metal and cast-in-place chimney liners will serve for wood, oil, and gas heating systems.

Benefits of Terra Cotta Chimney Liners

There are many benefits when it comes to the use of clay liners.

These include having enhanced insurance coverage, minimizing incidences of fire, better heat retention, and the prevention of harmful gas leakage.

Also, you get to benefit from comprehensive coverage of chimney relining from your insurance provider.

Adhering to strict building and fire regulations is another clear benefit of having your chimney properly lined.

Let’s have a brief discussion of each of these points, shall we?

  • Having Enhanced Insurance Coverage

As long as improvements are made to chimneys during renovations, you’re likely to benefit from enhanced insurance coverage.

Quite many insurance policies require homeowners to do their part in maintaining their properties.

When no renovations are conducted to improve your chimneys, you’re likely to have limited insurance coverage on your property.

  • Minimizing Incidences of Fire

One of the clear benefits of having clay liners installed in a chimney is the cutback on risks.

As wood fuels are burned, combustion byproducts lead to the accumulation of tar and creosote. These are well known to be highly flammable.

With proper lining, such accumulation is significantly reduced, thus minimizing fire incidences that could engulf your chimney and home.

  • Better Heat Retention

With clay liner installed in a chimney, you benefit from better heat retention as well as improved airflow. What more? One obvious benefit that results from better heat retention is fuel efficiency.

Here, less fuel is burned with greater heating efficiency.

  • Prevention of Harmful Gas Leaks

Chimneys are designed as venting systems for combustion byproducts.

While this is true, chimneys will need to be properly lined to effectively channel gases out. When adequately lined, all combustion gases are vented out without the risk of leaks getting into living spaces.

  • Comprehensive Coverage of Chimney Relining Costs

A greater percentage of insurance providers are ever willing to foot the cost of chimney relining.

This is a win-win situation for all parties involved because the home or property is better protected. You might want to take advantage of this opportunity by relining your chimney (wood burning) with clay liners.

  • Adhering to Strict Building and Fire Regulations

One of the ways to avoid attracting heavy fines or penalties relating to building and fire safety regulations is by having liners installed.

As stated earlier, the clay liner is most ideal for wood-burning appliances. By having such in place, you get to avoid heavy fines while also benefiting from enhanced functionality and safety.

Clay Flue Liners For Chimneys: Are They The Best?

When it comes to the types of liners to use or install in a chimney, it all boils down to individual needs.

Clay liners are most ideal for wood-burning devices while cast-in-place and metal liners serve all venting needs irrespective of fuel type. You should consult with your chimney technician before deciding.

So far, we’ve provided useful insight about clay liners and what (in terms of fuels) they’re best suitable for. With such information, you should have a better idea of what to go for.

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