Winter weather is very damaging to masonry chimneys. According to the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA), more damage happens to the masonry chimney during the winter than other time of the year. Damaged masonry material is at a greater risk for accelerated deterioration, which can quickly lead to structural problems and safety hazards. If you are wondering how so much extensive damage can happen over one winter, it is a process call the freeze and thaw cycle.
At Ashbusters, we have been repairing masonry chimney damage in the Nashville area for many decades. You can put your trust in our CSIA-certified professionals to properly remove and replace damaged bricks and mortar joints. We also provide preventive and maintenance services that can keep your chimney safe and strong during the vicious freeze and thaw cycles. To help you understand exactly how this damage occurs, we would like to tell you more about freeze and thaw cycles and how you can avoid these extensive damage.
What happens to the bricks and mortar joints of my chimney during a freeze and thaw cycle?
Masonry materials are very porous, which means they naturally absorb water. Because your chimney is constantly exposed to the element of weather, it is likely that its bricks and mortar joints contain water from rain, melted ice, and snow. When the temperature drops below freezing, any moisture inside the masonry materials will freeze and expand. As the weather warms back up, the force of the water thawing is strong enough to cause the bricks and mortar joints to crack, crumble, and break. This process of freeze and thaw repeats itself a few times during the winter. This leads to tremendous damages to your masonry chimney structure.
How can Ashbusters help me prevent masonry damage from freeze and thaw cycles?
After we repair all damaged masonry materials, our CSIA-certified chimney technicians recommend the best water penetration preventive services for your chimney. We also offer professional chimney cap installation to customized flashing construction and repair to keep water out of your chimney. However, for the ultimate protection against freeze and thaw cycle damage, our waterproofing service is a smart investment.
After we clean the bricks and mortar joints, we apply a waterproofing formula to the exterior of your chimney. It creates an invisible barrier against water penetration from rain and snow. This product is specifically manufactured for masonry chimneys, so it is vapor permeable, which means gases are allowed to escape so that they do not become trapped to cause more damage.
Whenever the temperature remains below freezing, Ashbusters recommends taking a look at the exterior of your chimney. If you notice any damaged masonry, contact us as soon as possible to schedule an appointment for professional chimney masonry repair and water penetration preventive services.