Custom Chimney Caps
Outside-mount chimney caps are different from standard single flue chimney caps in several ways – and the differences are important.
The top opening of your chimney flue usually is thought of as the place where smoke and combustion gases exit. But the flue is a two-way system: if things can get out, then things also can get in. That’s when problems start.
Both full-width chimney caps and flue covers protect the flue opening from rain and debris, both of which can lead to serious trouble with your chimney system. Full-width caps, however, go one important step further: they protect the entire top of the chimney including the chimney crown and the masonry below it.
Full-Width Chimney Cap Design
The custom chimney caps installed by Fire N’ Stone of Tilton, NH, are like handsome little roofs over your chimney. The angle of the roof channels rain and snow away from your chimney’s masonry and flashing.
Typically made of stainless steel which can be powder coated if desired or copper, our chimney caps also keep excess moisture off your chimney crown. This is a critical function, particularly if your crown is made of concrete, which is prone to cracking after years of service.
Full-width chimney caps have mesh-like walls, which serve two purposes:
- Allow smoke to easily leave the top of the chimney
- Block outside debris from getting into the flue
Chimney Caps Prevent Flue Obstructions
Without an outside-mount chimney cap – or at the very least, a quality flue cover (which covers only the flue openings) – your chimney is open to all manner of outside debris such as leaves, twigs and falling fruit from nearby trees as well as small animals.
The problem with birds, squirrels, rodents and other critters, aside from the fact they sometimes die in the flue unable to escape, is their nesting materials.
Add in some tree debris and several years without proper chimney sweep (cleaning) services, and your flue passage is considerably narrowed.
When smoke from a fire backs up into the home, it carries with it carbon monoxide, which is invisible and odorless. Carbon monoxide gas is known to be potentially fatal to both people and pets when inhaled.
Shield against Flying Sparks & Embers
Proper chimney caps do a good job at keeping sparks and embers from exiting the flue and landing on your roof or in your yard. This alone is enough to warrant installing a chimney cap.
Chimney Crown Protection
As noted, chimney crowns often begin to crack over time. If water gets into the cracks, it will freeze and expand, causing further damage. Before long, a good portion of the crown can begin allowing water to run down into the interior areas of the chimney, which often leads to dangerous structural damage.
Chimney Flashing Protection
The strips of flashing that seal the gap between the exterior chimney and roof are there to keep water from pouring into your home and causing damage to building materials as well as the invisible areas of the exterior chimney masonry.
Flashing should be monitored and repaired or replaced when necessary. A custom chimney cap is another layer of protection as it re-routes much of the water from rain and snow away from the chimney’s base just above the roof.
If you don’t have a full-width chimney cap or do have one that’s damaged, call Fire N’ Stone at
(603) 293-4040 to resolve the problem.
We serve the entire Lakes Region of New Hampshire including Franklin NH, New Hampton NH, Northfield NH, Meredith NH, and other communities.