Aardvark Newsletter No. 24
Inside this issue:
- · The importance of a Chimney Cap
Chimney caps, like their name suggest are metal covers fitted over the opening of a chimney. There are a few reasons you should consider having one installed on your home’s chimney.
Every so often pieces of burning embers will make their way out of your chimney and into the surrounding environment. They can easily land on the roof and start a fire. They could also land in a pile of debris in your yard and cause a fire as well. A chimney cap would help keep embers inside the chimney.
If you live in an area which experiences frequent rainfall having a chimney cap installed is a really good idea. Generally speaking, moisture and masonry do not get along very well. An uncapped chimney allows moisture to get inside the chimney and degrade the masonry over time. During the summer months when you are not using the chimney you may notice a musty smell throughout your home because of this moisture.
This problem can be avoided by using a chimney cap. In addition to protecting the interior of the chimney, the cap will also help protect the crown from ice and rain. If it is not protected it will wear down much more quickly.
One of the main concerns people with chimneys have is keeping animals out. Raccoons and birds can easily use the opening to get inside your home. Birds will also create nests which can block the flue and cause smoke and gasses to end up in your living room. You can keep all types of animals out of your chimney by installing a cap.
Just be aware that some of the caps use very small screens to keep animals out. It is important for you to clean these screens on a regular basis. Soot and creosote can cause them to become clogged which will reduce the draft of your chimney and lead to smoke backing up.
Speaking of drafts, chimney caps help out in this area too. Capping the chimney properly will help ensure it has a proper draft. If you live in a windy area this will benefit you greatly.
Make sure you obtain the right size chimney cap. If it is not the right size it will likely do more harm than good. It will interfere with the chimney’s draft and efficiency so you will have to burn more fuel to make up for it.
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