When utilizing your fireplace, the chimney flue liner is essential for defending your home against fire and preventing hazardous gases from seeping back inside. Your chimney installation westchester ny may contain a clay tile lining, which, depending on when it was built, could crack and endanger your family and house.
Let’s examine the reasons why flue liners break, the severity of this issue, and some solutions.
What Causes Flue Tile Cracks?
Due to their low installation costs, clay flue liners are a common feature in many chimneys across the nation. They are not as durable as metal or cast-in-place liners, though.
Clay tile cracking is most frequently caused by the chimney’s uneven heat distribution. Clay doesn’t absorb heat as well as other materials do, which causes uneven heat to cause the tiles to bend and shatter.
Cracked flue tile dangers
Because they are the first line of defense against chimney fires, flue liners are required in all new fireplace construction. Therefore, if your liner is damaged, the risk to your home and family increases the longer you neglect the problem.
The following problems may result from damaged or missing flue tiles.
Seepage of Gas
When a chimney system is working properly, harmful gas from combustion is transported up the flue and outside the building. This gas can leak back into your home through a fractured flue liner, endangering the health of your family members by poisoning them with carbon monoxide. The CDC reports that 2,444 people died as a result of accidental carbon monoxide poisoning between 2010 and 2015, with the winter months seeing the highest rates of deaths. Because carbon monoxide has no color or smell, many people don’t realize they have a problem until it is too late.
Think of your chimney as a straw; if the straw is broken, the liquid will flow more slowly. The chimney is the same way. The smoke and gas that the fire produces won’t properly exit the house if the flue tiles are cracked. Your fireplace will burn inefficiently and produce less heat than it would if your chimney liner were intact due to poor ventilation.
Your property is also at risk of fire if your chimney liner is damaged. The combustible components in your home may come into contact with the high temperatures in the chimney through the cracks, igniting them. According to experts, woodwork exposed to a broken or unlined chimney can catch fire in as little as 3.5 hours. The loss might be disastrous if your family is asleep or not home.
Finally, the gases can enter the brick and mortar chimney components through a damaged chimney liner. These gases can cause the brickwork materials to deteriorate and shatter, which might cause the chimney to lean or collapse.
Fixing a Corrupt Flue Liner
As we previously noted, compared to other materials like metal, clay flue liners are less robust, less effective in absorbing heat, and more susceptible to corrosion. The safest course of action is to replace any damaged tiles, but keep in mind that it won’t be long before the issue recurs. Depending on the quality, clay liners last for five to ten years. You might be better off investing a little more money to replace a cracked clay tile liner with one made of a more resilient material, such as stainless steel or cast-in-place chimney liners. With routine maintenance, either liner will last for your entire life, making it a better investment than clay.
How Can I Tell If My Flue Liner Needs to Be Replaced?
The typical homeowner may not be aware that there is a problem with their chimney until a disaster occurs. The best method to stay informed about the condition of your chimney is to arrange for a yearly examination by a qualified expert. A qualified chimney replacement westchester ny can identify minor damage and fix it before it worsens; frequent cleaning and inspection can help prevent creosote buildup, another factor in chimney fires. A professional will advise whether it would be more cost-effective to repair or replace your damaged flue liner.
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