Chimney Flashing Types and Tips to Prevent Water Leaks
There are parts of a chimney that might require fixing immediately if they get damaged. One of the aspects that can suffer damage is chimney flashing. Chimney flashing repair is important to guarantee home safety. Whether a part of the chimney is damaged or missing, you need to get down to work fast in order to repair it, otherwise, your home safety is at risk.
Chimney flashing plays an important role in how a chimney works. Most people opt to sweep and go for other chimney services, but sadly, these do not suffice sometimes. Homeowners tend to underestimate chimney flashing problems.
In this blog, we are going to study chimney flashing, its types, and its advantages.
What is Chimney Flashing?
Chimney flashing is an important part of the chimney that protects your roof and chimney from moisture, which is connected to the roof.
Chimney flashing can actually last many years. It can protect the roof for 30 years, but this depends on many factors. So, whenever you’re planning to have chimney flashing, choose the right size and shape. Consider that the weather can cause leaks eventually as well.
There are several types of chimney flashing based on the construction material, which can range from copper to steel. Each chimney flashing type has distinctive anti-corrosive properties.
Aluminum – Not the best but the most popular of all for its affordability. This metal roof chimney flashing can resist rust.
Steel – It is more expensive and resistant to rust than aluminum.
Copper- This is the type of material you would want for your chimney flashing, allowing that it never rusts. Because of this, a copper chimney flashing is pricier than one made of steel.
Vinyl or PVC – Using vinyl or PVC flashing can be counterproductive in extreme climates. It is the weakest of all the materials mentioned here. It is affordable and only suitable for hot climates.
Parts of Chimney Flashing
Chimney flashing is made up of step flashing, counter flashing, and saddle flashing. The base of the flashing around chimney is under the roof’s shingles, while the counter flashing is in the mortar and bent down. The step flashing is bent upwards.
The saddle flashing is an important part of the chimney flashing that prevents the accumulation of water on the roof and inside the chimney. It is a peak and does not suit all chimney sizes. Not only does it protect your chimney and roof from water build-up but also from snow in winter. The counter flashing is always on top of the step flashing.
All the chimney flashing parts are important and have a function. If a part is missing, the roof is at risk of water damage. Contractors check your chimney flashing if you are suspicious of water damage, leaky chimney, or any other issue. You can check it by yourself first and then call the roofers.
Signs You Need Chimney Flashing Repair
Although roof flashing is durable, this is determined by the size and quality of installation. Proper installation can increase the life of use of chimney flashing. The longevity of the house also plays a vital role.
You may need chimney flashing repair if, for example, the water starts leaking through the flashing or from the inside and outside of the chimney. The following signs can indicate that something is wrong:
- This is one of the most common signs that suggest chimney flashing repair or replacement is the solution.
- If the structure looks ugly, rusty, and stained.
- If the water is damaging your roof and walls down the way.
- Bricks are totally or partially discolored. In this, you may need a full chimney flashing service. Discolored bricks mean water is leaking.
- When the caulking starts cracking, creating gaps.
Important to point out that leaks are most common in April when spring begins and during thunderstorms and heavy rains. Leaks can occur if the flashing is too old and worn.
Leaky Flashing Tips
Chimney flashing needs constant checking and repairing (if necessary). Make sure you verify the condition of your flashing to prevent water leaks. If you are unsure about how to do it, call a company to do the job. Do it as soon as possible to prevent the problem from getting worse. Check the flashing of the new house you have just moved to, in order to ensure it is not faulty.
Your chimney failure can lead to roof and attic damage. If this ever happens, call a roofing company for help. Make sure you entrust this job to somebody with experience, as poor flashing can damage the chimney. Your chimney can collapse or become brittle if water gets in.
Experts recommend checking and repairing minor damages before they get out of control. You should inspect your chimney flashing at least once a year to look for possible damages or gaps. Not doing so can impact negatively your roof, walls, and chimney.
If you are not a roof installer or professional, leave the inspection job up to experts. This is a delicate task that calls for experience and special tools. So, whenever you need to install or repair your chimney flashing, read reviews before you hire the best company.
Not all masons and roofing businesses can repair or replace chimney flashing correctly. Only experts can do this job.
Chimney flashing repair cost
If the flashing is properly installed, you just need to release the flashing with any sealant. The same applies to chimney flashing structures that have no flared or warped edges.
The chimney flashing repair cost can be over $200, but it can come up to $400 depending on the size, flashing material, and roof type where the structure is installed. In general, you can end up spending around $150 if the flashing is still in condition or $450 if it’s really damaged. The roofers will consider factors like the size and type of chimney to set the price. But if you need to change your chimney roof flashing, prices go up to $1000 or more. Oftentimes, homeowners wait too much time to sort out their chimney flashing issues and end up spending twice as much.