The Important Job of Chimney Flashing
Chimney flashing is the material that seals the gap between your exterior chimney and roof. It’s one of the simplest components in a chimney system, but it’s one that can lead to very serious problems if damaged. Hudson Valley Chimney of Poughkeepsie, NY, would like to cover a little about what chimney flashing does and how you can make sure yours is working as it should.
Chimney Flashing 101
Properly installed chimney flashing has two parts:
This is a bent piece that lies flat below the roof shingles and against the sides of the exterior chimney.
This is a flat piece that covers the top gap of the step flashing.
A lot of the flashing used today is made from aluminum, which is sturdy, rust-resistant and economical. Flashing can also be made of steel, copper and vinyl.
The purpose of chimney flashing
Whether a chimney base is partially or completely enclosed within a home, any gap between it and the roof needs to be sealed.
When applied correctly, flashing is the perfect solution to prevent water from rain and melting snow from running down into unseen areas of the home. Flashing can suffer damage over the years. It can warp and bend and become unseated. This isn’t something the average homeowner is going to notice right away. Something else the average homeowner won’t immediately notice is the damaging results of water spilling down through compromised flashing.
Possible damage caused by unsecured flashing
When water is allowed to move past chimney flashing, it can cause expensive damage to attics and roofs. Further, water can lead to decay and deterioration of the chimney’s bricks and mortar below the roof line, an area you would never normally see. Finally, mold growth is always a concern in areas that are damp and have little or no ventilation. A major mold outbreak can happen below your roof in a very short period of time.
How to tell if your flashing needs repair or replacement
You can do a simple visual inspection of your chimney flashing, if you’re comfortable getting up on the roof. Check for loose areas, warping and gaps. Look for rust, decay and broken seals. It doesn’t take a very big space for water to invade your home. In addition to your visual inspection, you should schedule an annual professional inspection with a licensed chimney inspector. Trained chimney inspectors will look closely at your flashing, and they’ll also examine all other visible areas of your chimney system during a basic Level 1 inspection. Most inspectors can perform any repairs or replacements that might be needed.
When hiring a chimney inspector or any chimney services provider, follow these guidelines:
- Confirm that they’re licensed to do business in your area
- Confirm that they carry full liability insurance
- Find out how long they’ve been in business
- Ask friends and associates if they’ve used the company before
- Talk with a representative and get a “feel” for what it would be like working with them
- Ask questions and make sure they’re answered in a way you understand
The help your chimney needs
Since 1976, Hudson Valley Chimney has provided licensed and insured chimney services throughout the Poughkeepsie, New York, region. Call our expert team for chimney inspections, chimney repairs, chimney sweeping and all other services your chimney may need.
Speak with a helpful professional today at (845) 471-1071 or get in touch through our handy contact form.