Michigan is home to chilly autumns and springs—and downright freezing winters. When you want a cozy fire to stay warm, a safe chimney that you can trust to operate properly is a must. Even when you don’t want to light a fire, a well-maintained chimney is essential for protecting your property’s integrity and keeping pests and water out of your home. At Next Level Custom Brick, we specialize in chimney repair as well as other residential masonry services. Reach out to our team for estimates, repairs, maintenance, and more.
What Common Issues Require Chimney Repair?
While chimneys are built to last for years, they can occasionally fall into disrepair or get damaged. Some of the most common issues include:
- Cracks and damaged sides: Foundation settling, weight, and age can lead to crack developments in brick chimneys. You might see zigzag cracks between the bricks or, in more serious situations, cracks through the brick. You might see cracks in the chimney crown, damaged mortar, and even a growing tilt in your chimney.
- Water damage: If there are gaps between your roof and the walls of your chimney or missing pieces of flashing, snow, rain, and runoff can get inside your home. There, it can cause mold and destroy insulation. Over time, it can even lead to wood softening and structural damage.
- Storm damage: Over time weather damage from a storm can cause issues that would require repair even on newer chimneys. Damage from branches being blown onto your chimney during a major storm (or even smaller storms over time) for example could cause issues.
- Creosote: When you light a fire, soot can build up on the inside. By burning wet wood or particularly smoky wood, black creosote can build up in your fireplace, where it presents a significant risk of ignition and house fires. While this can be addressed through professional chimney cleaning, fast buildup may indicate a problem with your chimney.
A professional residential masonry expert, like Next Level Custom Brick, can assess your chimney, look for signs of damage, and propose a plan to repair it.
The Benefits of Rebuilding Chimneys
Sometimes, chimney damage can be so severe that simple repairs don’t do enough to make it safe to light a fire. But for more serious problems, your overall chimney may need a full or partial rebuild project to replace some or all of the exterior brick and the concrete chimney cap. We offer thorough chimney, roofline, and flashing inspections to see if a partial or full rebuild is needed.
The benefits of rebuilding your chimney include:
- Elimination of leaks, especially after several patching and tuckpointing projects
- Better fireplace safety and performance, especially after significant damage
- Chimney updates with new, safer, and longer-lasting materials for overall lower maintenance
The Importance of Inspection and Repairs
But it’s best to have your chimney routinely inspected and maintained before it gets to the point of needing major repairs. At Next Level Custom Brick, our team can inspect your chimney inside and out to check for developing problems. Then, we can perform tailored maintenance and repair services to halt damage in its tracks. By having your chimney professionally inspected once a year, you can catch most potential problems early, significantly reducing overall chimney repair costs across the lifetime of the home.
When to Hire a Local Chimney Repair Masonry Professional
The generally accepted best practice is to schedule an annual chimney inspection. However, if it’s been a while since your last appointment, it’s even more important to schedule an inspection before lighting a fire. Even if it’s been years since you last used your chimney, buildup, gradual damage, and even bird’s nests can increase the risk of a house fire. Whether it’s time for an inspection or you can see visible damage from outside your home, call in a local chimney repair masonry professional like Next Level Custom Brick to get peace of mind.
Chimney Repairs, Chimney Rebuilding, and Chimney Restoration From Next Level Custom Brick
Ready for a warm fire at home? Call in the experts at Next Level Custom Brick. We serve homeowners in and around Garden City, Michigan, and the northern Metro Detroit area. Schedule an appointment and get an estimate for your chimney repairs or rebuild.