All parts of the chimney system are vital in helping it work properly and safely. However, some parts are often overlooked because they’re hidden from sight. In order to notice if the chimney cap is damaged or missing, a homeowner would have to check on it periodically by looking up. Even then, you can’t tell if there is minor damage. The chimney cap has an important job to do! This is why it should be inspected by a professional, along with the rest of your chimney system.
Chimney Caps And Their Job
The chimney cap is a metal piece installed at the top of the flue that caps over the opening. It has a “roof,” along with mesh walls to keep out weather, wind, and animals. It is also called a spark arrestor – because it keeps sparks in, preventing roof and brush fires around the property.
Animals In The Chimney
It’s important that the chimney cap be properly installed and assessed periodically. Doing so will make sure it’s still in good shape. Consequently, a faulty chimney cap can lead to devastating water damage and animal intrusion! Animals can be quite a nuisance, causing problems such as:
When an animal leaves the chimney system, they often leave behind nesting materials, food stores, and fur or feathers. All of these are flammable and do not belong in the chimney system.
- Damage to the Flue.
Animals also have to use their claws to climb out of the chimney. This leaves behind scratches that can cause weaknesses in the flue liner. These scratches collect more creosote and soot, as well. All of this can quicken the deterioration, and result in holes in the lining system.
- Foul Odors.
Animals often enter the chimney system through the year, but sometimes they get stuck! They can suffocate and die, unable to escape. In this case, the animal carcass can cause a blockage, resulting in a smoky fireplace or flue fire. This causes the foul odors of decomposition that can run you out of house and home.
The Chimney Swift
Unlike most animals that can be professionally removed from a chimney system, the chimney swift cannot be removed. This small species of bird nests in chimneys almost exclusively, since their natural habitats of hollowed trees are almost completely gone. They are federally protected. So, once they inhabit your chimney, they have to leave on their own. This can take over 90 days in some cases!
Prevent Animal Intrusion With A Chimney Cap
At Brickliners, we put our customer safety and comfort first. We offer preventative services to make it easier to keep your chimney safe and working for you. Brickliners willl install, repair, and replace chimney caps – your chimney’s first defense against outside intruders!
You can discuss your chimney cap or critter problem with a Brickliners chimney sweep today by calling 802-872-0123 or using our online scheduling tool.