3 Ways to a Better Chimney

masonry-repair-specialistA beautiful chimney adds value and elegance to your home. Over time, your chimney may need repair due to weather, water damage, or regular wear-and-tear. There are several things that a masonry repair specialist can do to help restore and repair your chimney as well as ways that you can maintain your chimney.

Regular Chimney Cleaning

Does your chimney need regular cleaning? Major repairs and cleaning require the help of a masonry repair specialist, but there are many ways that you can help keep your chimney clean. Sweep out the entire chimney, from the fireplace to crown, at least once or twice a year. Try to clean the chimney before the busy winter season when the fireplace will be in use more often.

Remove any excess build-up of soot and creosote. Creosote build-up is a prime cause of fires as it is a very flammable substance. If you don’t know how to clean your chimney or need help contact a professional service to inspect and clean your chimney.

Chimney Repair

Sometimes your chimney will have cracks, damaged mortar joints, rust or damage to the chimney crown. It is important to address these issues once you see them. Why? Small cracks and damage can easily lead to massive repairs and replacement, especially if water damage occurs. What else to look out for? Watch for any excess moisture, debris, or cracked tiles accumulating in your fireplace. This can indicate damage that needs immediate attention.

Chimney Replacement

Unfortunately, sometimes the damage is too great for a simple repair. If that is the case, then you may have to replace the entire chimney. While costly, replacing your chimney will add value to your home in the long term, providing you with a safe and beautiful fireplace and chimney. A professional contractor can give you an estimate for your chimney. For homeowners that hope to resell their home in the future, replacing a dilapidated chimney is just one way to enhance the overall beauty and curb appeal of the home.

How to Improve Your House in 3 Steps

chimney-cleaningHomeowners find a variety of ways to restore and improve their homes. Some ways to renovate and improve their homes could be something as simple as chimney cleaning and repair or replacing a cracked driveway. Here are several ways that you can improve your home.

Chimney Repair

What is one of the first steps to improving your home? When you purchase your home, aesthetic beauty often travails over function. Yet one feature that homeowners continue to love is a beautiful fireplace. One way that you can affordably add value to your home is by chimney cleaning and maintenance. If your chimney is starting to look worn, has cracks and loose bricks, or has a high amount of soot and buildup, it is time to have your chimney professionally inspected and repaired.

Surprisingly enough, many times only minor repairs and maintenance will restore your chimney and fireplace to its former glory. This is ideal if you are looking to sell your home in the future or just want to enjoy the warmth and elegance of a luxurious fireplace. A professional service will inspect the entire chimney, from inside the home all the way through the flue to the crown. They will assess what damage may exist from water damage, critters, and weather. Have professionals look at your chimney at least once or twice a year, preferably before the winter months when the fireplace will be in regular use.

Driveway and Landscaping

Another easy step to improve the overall curb appeal of your home affordably is by repairing the driveway and landscaping. Professional landscaping, while relatively inexpensive when compared to most major home repairs, can impress visitors and potential buyers. The first impression means everything. So maintain your landscape and driveway regularly.

Masonry and Insulation

Older homes have natural wear and tear. Sometimes a brick home may have loose bricks or a foundation may have cracks. Looking into the benefits of masonry repair can improve the overall look of your home and improve insulation while providing extra much-needed protection against water and weather damage.

Maintain your home for a lifetime. Speak to a professional today about how you can improve your home in a few simple steps.

 

What is Masonry?

what-is-masonry

What is masonry? And why should every homeowner understand this term? While the term “masonry” mainly refers simply to building structures in its simplest definition, there are actually several complex aspects to masonry construction.

Different Materials

Generally, what is masonry? Masonry can refer to anything from brickwork to concrete block. Each form of masonry has its own distinct features, benefits, and challenges. Knowing what is masonry will help you make the correct decision regarding your particular renovation job. For example, the unique look and style of brickwork as a throwback to the mid-20th century has risen in popularity as homeowners look for a unique art of building. On the other hand, concrete block, known as Concrete Masonry Units, often make up the structural integrity of many commercial and industrial buildings. CMUs can be painted, ribbed, sandblasted, or even striated to create a distinct decorative look.

Stonework

Intricate stonework on corners, doors, and window jambs often involve using dressed stone. This is known as ashlar masonry. Many times natural stone will be placed to give the illusion of a stone masonry façade over concrete blocks. Stonework may be irregular or uniform, depending on the homeowner’s specifications. The differences between natural materials versus those that are manufactured are usually not apparent.

Additional Protection and Insulation

Masonry walls offer several important forms of protection against the elements. Besides providing structural durability and strength for homes on coastal regions that are prone to hurricanes and other weather extremities, these walls can provide an added layer of protection during a fire. A “fireman’s cut” or “fire cut” is often set along a beam. This adds to structural integrity and prevents a wall from collapsing during a fire event.

Whether building an architectural structure or a home for your family, knowing the key aspects of masonry will help you make the right decision during renovation and construction.