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How Often Do Chimneys Need To Be Replaced

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  • 13-12-2022
How Often Do Chimneys Need To Be Replaced

How often do chimneys need to be replaced? We look at if you need a new chimney, the signs of chimney damage and how often does a chimney flue need replacing.

Do You Need a New Chimney?

Chimneys are frequently overlooked because people are more concerned with the roof than the chimney. This is especially true if they don't utilise it frequently. However, it is important to maintain your chimney as needed and to keep it in excellent shape. 

As it is advisable to have skilled roofers inspect the chimney, roofing businesses frequently provide this as one of their services.

Simply glancing at your chimney will not always tell you when it needs to be fixed. A good assessment of the chimney should be part of your yearly roofing inspection, but if you discover an issue prior to the inspection, it should be corrected right once. 

If it's discoloured, it's likely that something is wrong; have an expert look at it; they'll be able to spot the problem quickly and tell you what you need to do to cure it.

Heat getting into places it shouldn't or water damage are two common causes of discolouration. Either of these factors signals that you should investigate repairs; again, delaying this will result in a greater problem later on.

How Often Do Chimneys Need To Be Replaced?

How Long Do Chimneys Last?

A well-designed and well-maintained chimney may be expected to last 50 to 100 years; however, many chimneys haven't received the required maintenance throughout the years.

Additionally, it is essential to have your chimney inspected both before and after moving into a new home. A knowledgeable chimney provider can help you assess your chimney's state to see whether it has any damage and can also explain the steps necessary to keep your chimney secure and functional.

Your chimney will endure longer if it has been waterproofed over time. Brick is a durable and long-lasting material, however, moisture will deteriorate it. Waterproofing your chimney will keep it protected from the elements. 

If your chimney is in the centre of the home, it will most likely endure longer than a chimney that goes up the side of the house and is exposed to the weather.

How Often Does a Chimney Flue Need Replacing?

A chimney flue liner typically lasts 15 to 20 years. You should rebuild the whole inside of your home after at least 15 years of occupancy to ensure that it conforms with building requirements. 

If your chimney flue liner is compromised, your property might experience a major fire. Your fireplace system should at the very least be thoroughly inspected.

You cannot presume the age or quality of the chimney flue liner if you recently bought an older home. The typical home inspection performed before buying a house does not include a check at the fireplace flue liner. Consult a trained chimney sweep for a comprehensive review of your whole fireplace system.

Signs of Chimney Damage:

 Water Damage

When water enters the chimney system, it can cause significant damage and perhaps the destruction of the chimney. Water leaking in the firebox, white stains on the external masonry, and wet areas of the walls and ceiling around the chimney are all warning signs. 

Due to what occurs when moisture enters bricks, water is the most dangerous adversary of a masonry chimney. The water inside bricks freezes and thaws during the winter, causing the water to expand and shrink. Meanwhile, the movement of the freezing water causes movement in the bricks.

Masonry bricks erode gradually until the chimney structure begins to tilt and may collapse completely. Spalling is a symptom of water damage because tiny particles of cracked brick are deposited around your chimney and/or on the ground below. 

You may also notice brick fragments within your fireplace. Another sign of water damage is efflorescence. Efflorescence is a white discolouration caused by salt-containing water. It passes through the brickwork before being placed on the chimneys outside.

 Crumbling Mortar

The mortar that keeps the chimney's bricks together may begin to deteriorate and crumble. Water penetration, the poor-quality mortar used in construction, and other earthquake and meteorological events can all contribute to this. If this problem is not addressed, the entire chimney may collapse.

 Loose or Cracked Bricks

Water, lightning strikes, and other occurrences that destroy the bricks jeopardise the structural integrity of the chimney. As with disintegrating mortar, loose bricks, commonly known as "spalling", can cause major (and costly) problems with your chimney. 

 General Structural Cracks

Your chimney's brick or mortar cracking may first seem like a minor problem, but this will not persist. Water can seep into cracks, freeze, and expand, resulting in significant damage.

 Leaning Chimney

As soon as a leaning chimney is identified, it needs to be fixed to avoid a serious collapse and potential life threat. Only a skilled chimney inspector can determine the precise cause of the tilting and offer solutions.

 Cracked Chimney Crown

Chimney crowns are prone to cracking and deterioration, allowing moisture to enter the chimney system. Chimney crowns prevent water from entering the space between the flue and the chimney exterior. 

A full-width chimney cover keeps water out and provides additional protection to your whole chimney, potentially saving you money on chimney repairs and upkeep. If there is undiagnosed damage to your chimney crown, substantial moisture incursion may necessitate the construction of a new chimney.

It is occasionally required to climb to the roof in order to diagnose chimney crown damage. This is just another reason why yearly chimney inspections are essential. There are hazards associated with going onto a roof, which you may avoid by hiring expert chimney cleaners. 

Depending on the type of inspection you arrange, all aspects of a chimney are reviewed during an inspection. A Level 2 chimney inspection, for example, includes a video of the whole inside of the chimney flue from top to bottom.

 Damaged Chimney Cap

The first line of defence in the effort to keep moisture out of a chimney is a chimney cap. Without a chimney cover, water, rain, and snowfall right into the chimney flue. 

If you do not have a chimney cover, you must schedule a chimney inspection. If you do not have a chimney cover, there is a good chance that water damage has occurred in your chimney flue or on the outside brickwork. It's possible that enough damage has happened to need the installation of a new chimney, either partially or totally.

A chimney cap may be considered an accessory, but chimney specialists believe it is a vital component of every chimney. A simple chimney cap that rests atop your flue pipe is one option. If the chimney cap includes mesh, it will keep water out while also keeping animals and flaming embers out. 

A full-width chimney cap is a preferable alternative since it covers and protects the chimney crown while also being more aesthetically beautiful.


Cracked Chimney


Chimney Sweep / Water Damage

How Much Does It Cost to Remove a Chimney?

When it comes to removing a chimney, you may want to consider hiring someone to do it for you. However, if you decide to remove your chimney breast, keep in mind that it involves a number of stages and can be a time-consuming and labour-intensive process. 

If the area where the chimney is located suffers from water damage, fire damage, or chimney failure, the chimney must be replaced. There are several fees associated with chimney removal, and each will vary based on the facts of your situation.

Rebuilding the complete chimney stack and breast is generally more costly than replacing only the chimney breast.

Although the cost may vary depending on your property and the time of year, the typical cost to remove an entire chimney without the stack is approximately £2,200 - £2.400, while the average cost to remove an entire chimney stack with the breast is around £3,000 - £3,500. The cost of labour for removing a chimney breast varies based on a variety of factors.

The typical cost of labour for removing a chimney breast is roughly £200 to £300 per day. There are several forms of removal, and the type you choose will have a considerable influence on your cost. For example, removing the chimney breast alone may cost between £1,500 and £1,750. 

If you also want to remove the chimney stack, the cost might be between £3,000 and £3,500. The price is based on the size of the chimney breast. 

This is because the smaller the breast, the quicker the contractors can remove it. Similarly, a bigger chimney breast will cover a larger area, taking more time. As a result, labour costs will rise, as will the overall cost of removing the chimney.

Do you Need A Professional Chimney Pointing

Chimney pointing is the finish utilised between the stones or bricks that were used to create your chimney. These are also known as mortar joints. 

The mortar is used to hold the stones or bricks in place, but it also serves to keep water or moisture from seeping into the chimney while allowing moisture to leave. 

Since the chimney structure will vary over time owing to settling in the housing as well as temperature expansion and contraction, it is critical that the mortar be fairly flexible.

This is sometimes absent in older homes, therefore if you own an older home with the original chimney, your building may need to be repointed in order to work properly. 

Repointing should only be done by an expert. This is owing to the delicate nature of the construction, which is especially prevalent in older homes. The old mortar must be carefully removed, and the new mortar must be applied appropriately.

If one of these processes is not completed correctly, you will encounter further issues sooner rather than later. 

Professional roofers or roofing contractors have the required knowledge to correctly repoint your chimney so that it can survive for many years. 

If you do this early enough, the repairs will be modest, and it will only be a question of removing the old mortar and replacing it; then you'll be able to enjoy your chimney for many years to come.


Are you looking for the best chimney building and repair services in and around Newcastle. Whatever you require, our professional team can assist you with everything from small repairs to installing a completely new roof.