What You Might Discover About Your House Through Chimney Inspections

Chimneys, whether or not they are still connected to old fireplaces, wood stoves, or coal stoves, should still be inspected regularly. In fact, you might discover some very interesting or relevant things about your home through chimney inspections. Here are a few examples of things uncovered and discovered when chimney inspectors have done their jobs.  

The Type of Fuel, Furnace, and/or Stove the House Once Had

If your home currently lacks a fireplace, you might be wondering what the remaining chimney is for. Upon inspection of the chimney, the inspector can tell you exactly what type of fuel was turned to smoke or ash as it burned and went up the chimney, what kind of furnace the house had before, and/or if the house ever had a stove. He/she can do that when he/she looks down into the chimney with a scope.

If it was a wood-burning furnace, stove, or fireplace at one time, there will be signs of creosote build-up on the interior walls of the chimney. If it burned coal, there will be a lot of powdery black material smeared around inside the chimney. When oil burns, it leaves behind a yellowy greasy residue. All of these can be spotted when the chimney is scoped. 

The Chimney Has Structural Issues

A chimney inspection is primarily completed for the purpose of detecting roofing leaks. However, the chimney may also have structural issues. The inspection of the chimney will reveal if the chimney is about to buckle, crumble, and/or fall. If that is the case, then you need to hire a roofing contractor right away to fix that before the bricks land on someone's head.

The Chimney Is the Cause of Leaks in Your Roof

As previously mentioned, a chimney inspection checks for leaks. Leaks happen around the base of the chimney, but holes in the chimney also allow the chimney to leak. A roofer can apply flashing and tar around the base of the chimney if it is discovered that there are some leaks.

Rodents and Other Pests Are Using the Chimney to Get into Your Home

Chimneys that go unused for decades become doorways for pests to get into your attic, and eventually, into your home. Inspecting the chimney will reveal if any pests are a concern. A bit of tightly woven metal mesh secured over the top opening of the chimney will help deter pests from entering.