Chimney Maintenance 101: The Signs You Should Look Out For

chimney repair services in Toronto

Chimney Maintenance 101: The Signs You Should Look Out For

By now, it shouldn’t be a surprise that one of the dirtiest parts of the house is the chimney. Most of the time, it is filled with dense soot, combustion gases, and elements. This is why it’s important to maintain them with regular cleaning and repairs. Otherwise, you limit its lifespan despite being built to withstand harsh conditions.

Without further ado, let’s break down the signs you should look out for to maintain, clean, and repair your chimney.

Sign #1: The Stench of Burning Wood

If you find that the scent or stench of burning wood is emitting from an unused fireplace, then it’s time to act. This is usually a sign of severe creosote buildup, which has the potential to spark a disastrous chimney fire if left neglected.

Sign #2: The Difficult of Lighting Flames

We’ve learned in school that fire needs a bit of oxygen or air. Thus, if there is insufficient ventilation, it is difficult to start a fireplace. If you find it difficult to light up flames, this could be due to the substantial creosote buildup. Give your fireplace a thorough sweep to restore order.

Sign #3: The Accumulation of Non-Wood Debris

Discovering non-wood debris in your fireplace is nothing but bad news. The cause of this is certainly due to a faulty flue liner. Contact chimney professionals as soon as you become aware of the problem, and schedule a chimney relining immediately. If a fireplace is not properly ventilated, it has the potential to ignite nearby combustibles.

Sign #4: The Bricks are Starting to Whiten

If you find white flakes on brickwork, this may indicate major moisture deterioration. The only way forward is to rebuild the places that have been damaged.

Sign #5: The Apparent Cracks in the Brickwork

Apparent cracks in the brickwork of your fireplace are simply a revelation of deteriorating mortar. Because the mortar is what holds bricks together, it is critical to schedule a chimney masonry repair while the problem is still minor.

Sign #6: The Long Overdue Inspection 

If your most recent fireplace inspection was around a year ago, it’s time to pick up the phone and make a call. It’s important to note that a professional inspection of your chimney should be done at least once a year. This could help you prevent further damage or accidents.

Finding Rusty  Fireplace Accessories

While defects in the brick are easily visible from the outside, rust is less visible but can be just as detrimental. You may miss rust higher in the chimney unless you undertake annual chimney inspections, but you may notice symptoms coming from the fireplace.

Rust mostly indicated excessive moisture on the firebox or fireplace, which is never a good thing and can aggravate pre-existing issues. Thus, inspect the rusty chimney and choose the best next steps by contacting a chimney repair professional.

Shaling Down a Fireplace

Shaling is the formation of thin flue tile slices on the fireplace floor. It’s almost as though the weight is causing the chimney to collapse. It happens when the flue liner ruptures, allowing water to enter the space beneath the tiles. Water expands and changes temperature, causing the tiles to loosen and fall.

A damaged liner is a serious safety threat, thus any shaling should be investigated very away. A professional with a camera that can travel up the flue is the best option for checking for these issues.


While chimneys are meant to collect dust, debris, and other remnants of flame, they are also meant to be cleaned, maintained, and repaired. So if you haven’t yet, get to work and have your chimney and fireplace swept through. You won’t just prevent costly blunders, you will also extend its lifespan and make the most out of your investment.

For reliable chimney repair services in Toronto, Red Robin Masonry is the best in the field. We offer you first-class tools, industry expertise, and well-trained professionals. Call us now and get your FREE estimate today!

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