The real estate marketing is getting hot once again in Central Florida and as we continue to grow and expand, we are reducing the nesting places for birds and small animals.  After being displaced one of their favorites new areas to nest are in our attics, and their favorite entry place is through a damaged chimney chase cover or an open chimney.

What are Chimney Chase Covers?

A chimney chase cover is installed on top of a chimney to prevent the intrusion of moisture, water, leaves, branches, animals or other debris into the chimney, while at the same time allowing the proper ventilation of gases into the atmosphere.

Benefits of a Properly Sized Chase Cover

Earlier, it was mentioned that chimney chase covers protect your home from birds and other small animals nesting in your house.  Additionally, a     properly installed Chimney Chase Cover prevents water damage, moisture, debris, and discoloration (rust stains) of the wood chase and preserves the integrity and safety of your prefabricated (metal) fireplace. It also enhances the appearance of your home.

On the other hand, a damaged chimney chase cover if left unattended can sink in the center and accumulate water, leaves, and other types of debris.  The additional stress on the chimney chase cover can cause the top to deteriorate further.  Holes and cracks can develop, allowing water to seep into the masonry materials & even into your walls and woodwork.  This can cause significant damage to your home, which can be very costly.

Types of damage caused by moisture in the chimney include:  wood & roof rot, mold, firebox deterioration, leakage of carbon monoxide, and damaged sheet rock. Additionally, if debris falls into the chase and onto the chimney it could not only cause blockages but also it is a fire hazard.

Chimney Chase Cover Damage is Preventable

The good news is that this is easily preventable since these problems are easy to detect.  The obvious signs are rust stains & unsightly discoloration on the outside of your home where water runoff has carried rust from the worn out chimney chase top.   Once rust has been discovered, repairs should be made as quickly as possible, as you may be able to catch the problem before significant damage to the chimney system occurs.  Additionally, chimney chase covers are some of the most affordable safety features you can add to your chimney system.

Chimney Chase Cover Materials

There are four types of chimney chase materials – galvanized steel, aluminum, copper, and stainless steel. Each type has pros & cons, and speaking with your local chimney sweep company can help you decide which type is best for your home & needs.

Galvanized Steel: These chimney chase tops are the least expensive but can rust quickly, and generally have to be replaced within just a few short years.

Aluminum: Although aluminum chimney chase covers do not rust easily, they are generally not sturdy enough to function as well as other options.

Copper: Copper is considered to be the highest quality choice, and chimney chase tops crafted with copper are of higher quality, but also are substantially more expensive than other material types.  Copper chimney chase toppers are truly beautiful and many homeowners opt for this type just because of the beautiful design and appearance they offer. If you are looking to elevate the style of your house, a copper chimney chase top is the perfect option.

Stainless Steel: Stainless steel is the strongest material used to make chimney toppers. Stainless steel chimney chase tops are extremely durable and stand up very well against harsh weather conditions, making them the best value. Stainless steel also resists rust and will last decades before needing to be replaced again.