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Thread: Water Down Chimney

  1. #1
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    Water Down Chimney

    3 years ago I had 1/3 of the roof redone and the chimney reflashed. The roofer did not install chimney caps so I had a mason install one afterwards.

    2 years ago I had the same roofer replace another 1/3 of the roof, no reflashing done.

    The last third of the roof is not near the chimney, appears structurally sound, and only has algae.

    So it does not seem to me that water should be coming down the chimney during heavy rains.

    Has anyone experienced this? Could the flashing go bad that quickly? Or if rain comes in at an angle could it get in despite the chimney cap?

    ETA: I had this problem all the time before the cap was installed. Second edit to correct years.
    Last edited by Yppej; 4-17-18 at 4:19am.

  2. #2
    Senior Member bae's Avatar
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    I think you have a problem. I live in an area with heavy rains and frequent winds of 60+mph, and I don't have that problem with either of my chimneys. Proper design/maintenance up top is essential though.

    Get someone with a few clues to look at it ASAP!

  3. #3
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    I emailed the roofer since from what I am Googling this is usually a flashing issue not a masonry issue. I hope the roofer and mason don't point fingers at each other.

  4. #4
    Senior Member CathyA's Avatar
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    What kind of stone is your chimney? We have fieldstone. It did help to have someone re-do the flashing, but DH has to caulk around the stones and the flashing about every 2 years. If you have fieldstone, it absorbs the rain and it ends up running down through the rest of the chimney. But it's much worse if you have any cracks between the stones. Before we knew what to do, we had a stream of water running down the front of the fireplace. But you do have to caulk around the stones outside and the flashing on a regular basis.

  5. #5
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    It is brick. The roofing proposal included installing customer provided cap but then he said he couldn't do it because some bricks were loose, so I had to get a mason to fix them and install the cap.

    Inside the house (basement) it is cement, with an appearance similar to cinderblock.

    I heard back from the roofer. They will send someone to check on the problem.

  6. #6
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    You may have to get up into the attic. If water is coming out from INSIDE the chimney it is likely the chimney/morter/flashing itself.
    If OUTSIDE the chimney, the flashing could be the culprit, however water travels. It could be a roof leak that penetrates, then ends up running down the chimney. You may have to check when raining or run a hose up there and watch for water.

  7. #7
    Senior Member CathyA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ToomuchStuff View Post
    You may have to get up into the attic. If water is coming out from INSIDE the chimney it is likely the chimney/morter/flashing itself.
    If OUTSIDE the chimney, the flashing could be the culprit, however water travels. It could be a roof leak that penetrates, then ends up running down the chimney. You may have to check when raining or run a hose up there and watch for water.
    That's true. With water, you're never sure exactly where it's coming from and it can be a challenge figuring out the source.

  8. #8
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    I have a water down the chimney problem also. I need to figure out what I'm doing about it. I have three flues. Two go into the basement and one goes to the main floor. I believe the main floor flue is in the middle of the other two flues. They each have individual covers that are four sided like a pyramid. The covers on the outside are higher than the one on the inside. I believe the rain off the covers of the outside flue is coming down the first floor chimney. Till funds are better, I covered the chimney with a tarp. I've had no water problems but I can't use either of my fire places. The furnace must be newer because it goes thru PVC in the wall. For me I believe the solution will be one large cap that covers the whole chimney. The Tarp job looks ok from the road but is a-little worse looking from my back yard. Still looks better than water damage inside my house. I hope hear of your solution on time and under budget.

  9. #9
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    The issue is with lead flashing on the chimney. The flashing should be covered under the 5 year warranty which I have in writing but the roofer says I need to pay another $350.00. As I take it he didn't install new lead although the house is from 1950 and you would think it would need it by now, just smeared an asphalt type material on the side of the chimney to seal it, the bare minimum to meet code and not a quality job that would last.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Rogar's Avatar
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    I had a similar issue a few years ago. When ever it would rain I would have water drip down into the firebox. I had an old timer who was a retired roofing expert out and tar papered and re-shingled an area for several feet up slope of the chimney. He also replaced the flashing, but suspected the leak may have been uphill of the chimney. It fixed everything. My chimney has what they call a "cricket" on the uphill side of the chimney to deflect water and think that is pretty much standard good construction. They are code here for any new roofs. Roofing leaks are hard to figure, but it may be seeping in from above or around the flashing itself.

    Pretty much the same diagnosis Toomuchstuff says.
    Last edited by Rogar; 4-22-18 at 12:46am.

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