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Throat vs Top-Sealing Dampers

When it comes to heating your home, you want to be as cozy and comfortable as possible, but it seems like your utility bills get higher every year. One of the most common reasons why your heating costs have been increasing is that heated air escapes from your home through the chimney because your damper cannot close completely. If you have a traditional throat damper, Atlas Chimney damperChimney can help you save money and energy by installing a new top-sealing damper. For over 25 years, we have been providing the Austin area with top quality professional chimney maintenance, repair, and installation services. We would like to tell you more about why top-sealing dampers are so much better than traditional throat dampers.

Why do I need to replace my traditional throat damper?

The problem with throat dampers that they are made of metal, and over the years, these traditional dampers can suffer from corrosion damage. When your damper is rusted, it can be difficult to open and close, and it could even become stuck in position. Another problem with this type of damper is that it cannot seal properly because of its metal-to-metal closure. Heated and cooled air can easily leak through traditional throat dampers, and this can lead to higher utility bills because you must adjust your thermostat to be comfortable inside your home.

Why are top-sealing dampers so much better than throat dampers?

Installed at the very top of your chimney, a top-sealing damper has a silicone rubber gasket that provides an air-tight seal whenever the damper is closed. After Atlas Chimney replaces your throat damper with one of these dampers, you will notice that your utility bills are lower than they have been in the past. Since this type of damper is located at the top of the chimney, it can also function as a chimney cap by keeping water, birds, and wild animals out of the flue. If you have had difficulties opening and closing your metal throat damper, you will appreciate how easy it is to adjust your new top-sealing damper into position. You simply pull a lever by the firebox to open and close the damper. We strongly recommend updating your chimney with a top-sealing damper.

If you would like to make your home more energy-efficient, contact us today at Atlas Chimney to learn more about top-sealing dampers. We are here for all of your professional chimney maintenance, repair, and installation needs.

Spalling Brickwork: Why It Happens & How to Fix It

The bricks and mortar used to build chimneys are strong and durable enough to last for years. However, they can suffer from erosion damage, which is also known as spalling. This is from the constant exposure to the elements of weather. According to the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA), water can cause extensive and expensive damage to masonry chimneys! That’s why they recommend homeowners take preventive measures to protect their chimneys from water penetration.

For over 25 years, Atlas Chimney has been providing several professional chimney maintenance services. These prevent spalling damage, as well as chimney repair services, to fix any damaged bricks and mortar on your chimney. We would like to tell you more about spalling. In addition, what we can do to repair and prevent this type of chimney masonry damage.

How does spalling occur?

Masonry materials are naturally porous. This means the bricks and mortar of your chimney naturally absorb water every time it rains, sleets, or snows. Since your chimney is constantly exposed to the elements, there could be quite a bit of moisture within the masonry materials, and this causes erosion damage. The majority of spalling damage occurs during the winter, especially during any periods of freezing conditions.

Whenever the temperature falls below 32 degrees Fahrenheit, the moisture within the bricks and mortar freezes and expands. As the weather warms up, the force of the water thawing causes spalling to happen. Repeated freeze/thaw cycles over the winter can lead to the materials cracking, breaking apart, and even becoming loose from the chimney. These gaps and voids left behind allow more water to penetrate the chimney. This leads to more damage. If not repaired, the structure of your chimney can be in serious jeopardy and can even collapse completely!

How can Atlas Chimney help me with spalling damage?

Is your chimney is missing bricks or mortar joints? If so, our experienced chimney masonry technicians use specialized techniques like tuckpointing to repair the spalling damage. You can trust us to properly restore soundness to the structure of your chimney. By doing this, it prevents water leaks into your chimney and home. To prevent spalling from occurring, we provide professional chimney waterproofing services, which is a smart investment. A vapor permeable formula is applied to your entire chimney. It creates a barrier against water penetration and spalling for at least a decade!

Protect your chimney from extensive and expensive spalling damage. Contact us at Atlas Chimney to schedule an appointment for our professional chimney maintenance and repair services to keep your chimney safe and sound.

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