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Does Your Chimney Need a Cricket?

When you hear the term “chimney cricket,” you may think of the old tradition that dates back to pre-colonial England about a chirping insect inside the fireplace. According to this tradition, it is lucky to have a cricket in your home, especially near the chimney. However, we are referring to another type of chimney cricket. This cricket is on the roof as part of a flashing system, and it works to protect your chimney from water leak.

For over 25 years, Atlas Chimney has specialized in taking care of the leaky chimneys across the Austin area. We also repair and construct customized flashing including chimney cricket. We would like to tell you more about chimney crickets and their importance in your masonry chimney.

Does my chimney need a cricket?

chimney cricket on chimney

Not every chimney needs a cricket. If your chimney is 30 inches or more wide, the NFPA 211 Standards and the International Residential Code state that a cricket must be constructed to certain specifications. A properly-constructed cricket keeps water away from the chimney by directing it down the sides of the roof. This allows you to avoid water leaking into the attic and ceilings. Without a cricket, you are at an increased risk of water damage to your home. This could mean stained ceilings and walls, damaged bricks and mortar joints, and rotted wood. If you suspect a chimney leak, then you need to contact the team at Atlas Chimney as soon as possible.

What can I expect from my appointment with Atlas Chimney?

When our professionals arrive at your home, we will do a water leak inspection of your chimney to find the source of the leak. Even if your chimney is less than 30 inches wide, you may still need a cricket if we find that water is leaking through the flashing. After we take precise measurements of the area, we will construct and install a cricket. If your flashing is damaged, we can make repairs or build a new one. You can count on us to properly customize the flashing to your chimney and to install it to protect your home from water leaks.

Keep water out of your chimney by investing in a chimney cricket in your flashing system. If you suspect a leaky chimney, contact us today at Atlas Chimney to schedule an appointment!

What Does a Storm Collar Do?

Keeping water out of your chimney is a very important task for homeowners. This is because of the amount of damage that can be caused by water penetration, according to the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA). To be successful with this task, you have several options of preventative measures to take that can protect your chimney from water damage. One of these options is a customized flashing system. This keeps water from entering at the point where the chimney meets the roof.

If you have a prefabricated chimney, your flashing system should include a storm collar. This is similar to a chimney cap on a masonry chimney. If you live in the Austin area, Atlas Chimney specializes in protecting both masonry and prefabricated chimneys from water penetration damage. We offer several preventive services, including professional storm collar and customized flashing installation. Now, we would like to tell you more about the importance of storm collars.

What is a storm collar?

A prefabricated chimney is different from a masonry chimney because it exhausts through a metal pipe instead of a masonry structure. A storm collar is a circular piece of metal that fits on the round pipe of a prefabricated chimney just above the flashing system. It serves the important purpose of keeping water from rain and melted ice and snow from being able to enter through the opening where the pipe comes out of the flashing system.

How do I know if I need a new storm collar?

Unfortunately, even the most durable storm collars do not last forever. Over years of exposure to the elements, they can suffer from corrosion damage which can lead to the metal cracking and breaking apart. This can create gaps that allow water to enter your home. You may notice water in your attic or even see water stains on the ceiling by the fireplace. These are both signs that your storm collar should be replaced by a professional chimney technician.

Why do I need a chimney professional to install my storm collar?

A storm collar should be professionally installed. This ensures it will provide the proper protection needed to keep water out of your chimney. You can trust Atlas Chimney to correctly position the collar onto the pipe before screwing it into place. We will also waterproof the upper edge of the collar with sealant. That way water cannot leak in between the collar and the chimney pipe.

A storm collar can protect your prefabricated chimney from water leaks. Contact us today at Atlas Chimney to schedule an appointment for our professional chimney collar installation services!

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