Treated energy from HVAC systems is bound to escape through the chimney or fireplace when it isn’t sealed. Some of the value for sealing a chimney and fireplace is because it is unused, is retired, or gone out of service, being a huge source of energy loss and also being valuable despite being out of service. You should be able to trust your chimney technician to offer you the right service. However, such a delicate task shouldn’t be performed by you especially when you have little experience or know-how about the task at hand. If you're not going to use your fireplace again, or will not use it … Chimneys designed to use wood as fuel can no longer be used. The procedures involved can be overwhelming for some people. Consider sealing it only at the top or the bottom. All you need to do is call in the experts. After an old fire surround and hearth has been removed, the hole in the chimney breast can be bricked in to tidy up the wall. When a chimney isn’t operable any longer, it can be sealed from the top while leaving the fireplace to add to the beauty of your home. As long as you measure your chimney dimensions correctly, the installation should be easy. When retiring a chimney, many chimney experts recommend using Roxul, a hydrophobic mineral wool insulation, which means that it will dry out if it ever gets wet. If your damper is near the firebox, you can use insulation to seal the chimney. All Rights Reserved. One of the decisions you’ll have to make at some point regarding your chimney is to either seal them temporarily or permanently. Unlike the inflatable chimney pillow which is placed at the chimney bottom, true to its name, the top sealing damper is designed to be placed at the top or above the chimney crown. Leaks allow moisture into your home which can Sealing leaks in a brick chimney can be a lot of hard work but can save you a lot of time and hassle in the future if you seal the leak before it causes too much damage. Your email address will not be published. Hire the services of professional fireplace cleaners to clean it well. 2015-08-29. The fireplace flue can be a major source of energy loss. This is because quite a lot of work is needed to make a fire, and maintain the general functionality of the chimney including the removal of creosote and soot among others. Any of these methods will serve your needs. This serves to keep both debris and moisture out of your flue. If not, one can be fashioned from sheet metal using standard tools such as tin snips and pliers. Ask Question Asked 3 years ago. I would like to be able to sit on the floor w/o feeling the cold air barreling out. If you continue to use this site we will assume that you are happy with it. This chimney product comes in a variety of sizes to suit your needs. Now plug the bottom of the flue with a chimney balloon or similar, DraughtBusters recommend using an old pillow in a couple of black sacks, and removing it again in the summer. Despite briefly explaining the process involved in permanently sealing an unused chimney and fireplace, you don’t need to be worried about every detail involved. Here, the thimble ports left open will need to be sealed before using the chimney. Your professional advice would be greatly appreciated. Questions can be emailed to the address below. Sealing and insulating the clay flue at the top and bottom of the stack will ensure the job will yield these desired results. Required fields are marked *. You may be able to buy a pre-made cap at a heating supply retailer if you have a standard size clay liner that protrudes above the top of the chimney. Any of these methods will serve your needs. Your inquiry has identified the two main reasons for attempting this task. Posted/Updated: If you have an unevenly shaped clean-out, or an older cast iron one embedded in the masonry, capping may require a little more ingenuity. Outside chimneys can be only one inch from the outer wall of the home. Chimney … One of them includes a chimney that has run out its course. Second, the sealant works as a waterproofing agent and prevents leaks. Even new cast-iron dampers allow air loss. The furnace is in the basement, and on the main floor there was a thimble extending out on each side of the chimney. The measurements of a chimney are a minimum of four inches bigger in all directions than the flue. If you fall under this category, sealing your unused chimney may be your best bet. Sealing your older, unused chimney should not be a complicated task as long as attention is paid to prevention of air intrusion, as well as environmental and pest control. However, this doesn’t apply all the time. Blocking up an unused fireplace . The expanding foam found at home centres or hardware stores in small aerosol cans should be sufficient for this purpose. This significantly increases the appeal of the fireplace. Before sealing a brick chimney, clean the surface with a brick cleaner to remove all curing compounds or visible stains such as mold, mildew, efflorescence, or rust. One of the best ways (in my opinion) is to use a Chimney C Cap Chimney C Caps are a plastic terracotta cap with an bird/insect guard that sits in side the cap. A kitchen brick pizza oven & a living room fireplace share the same space. Suppose the fireplace is in the children’s bedroom, you can paint it with their favorite colors and put some additional toys, which they love to make it look cute. A: Unused flues should be capped at the top, to minimise rainwater ingress. Who you call for the job determines how well your unused chimney and fireplace is sealed or blocked. Question: I'm looking for advice on how to cap off an unused chimney. It absolutely will. It will need some ventilation. They are far less expensive than the newer dampers, but they must be removed before every fire and cannot be reinstalled until the fireplace has completely cooled. Sealing up an unused brick fireplace chimney will save money on your heating bills and increase your comfort level at home.In addition to letting in cold, these chimneys pull hot air out of the house. Within the chimney … Understanding these two terms is necessary for deciding on the appropriate actions and calculating costs. As with many home-related modifications, common sense should dictate the methods employed in sealing your redundant chimney. It would definitely be a good idea to call for a couple of estimates, even if you were thinking of doing the exterior sealing yourself. Here are the steps you will need to take to seal a leak in your brick chimney. How to permanently block a chimney The easiest way to seal off your fireplace is with a Chimney Balloon Inflatable Fireplace Plug. All of these reasons are valid and help determine the next line of action to take in sealing up the fireplace or chimney. 2:39. Also, the sealing damper keeps out moisture from your chimney. Plus, you can even decide to have it removed altogether. As people spend more of their time indoors, it becomes necessary to ensure that there’s enough supply of fresh air in the home. Chimneys made of stucco plaster, stone, and concrete also require sealing. Additional reasons include the extra work needed to keep a fireplace functional, being unable to use it, won’t depreciate the value of the property and the need for better indoor air quality. I will try to highlight the key considerations when doing this task, whether by yourself or with professional help. How to temporarily block a chimney. This is seen in the elaborate hearth and mantle designs. That is because a chimney needs some ventilation. That may be necessary if it becomes damaged or access to the inside of the chimney for future repairs is required. If your chimney is open at the top but is not in use, rainwater can travel all the way down to the bottom of the chimney stack. The first thing to ask is; "Why am I doing this?" Occasionally chimney pots may need to be capped if unused, protected from bird entry, rain blowing down the chimney pot, or both. Question I live in a cold weather climate. It doesn’t matter the size of your chimney crown. The best way to prevent an impending disaster is to prepare for it. Not everyone wants to temporarily seal of their unused chimney and fireplace. This can be easily accomplished with a combination of batts or rigid insulation stuffed tight inside these openings and then sealed with a few inches of blown-in polyurethane foam. In some cases, it may involve capping a chimney off. Such modifications may have to do with the creation of storage space. The paint used must match the existing colors of your living space. Simply cut a tight fitting plug out of foam insulation and block the hole on the bottom. In other words, such a chimney isn’t functional any longer or has retired. When a chimney and fireplace is out of service or retired, it will need to be sealed off. Last Updated: Mar 13, 2014 03:11 PM GMT. Both of these objectives can be achieved with the same modifications, but will require more than one component. These caps can be easily found and should be secured only with short sheet metal screws, to allow for future removal. Viewed 3k times 2. The process involves cleaning out the chimney and fireplace first. When no longer in use, the open space will require some form of blocking to prevent the elements from taking their toll on it. There are so many different options nowadays to cap off an unused chimney. If, on the other hand, the top of the chimney is capped, but it isn’t ventilated, moisture can build up on the inside of the chimney stack, a further cause of damp. Saving a big money on the heating bills by sealing them off when not in use is possible from masonry fireplaces in the house. That roof structure has to be removed, as well as the pipe it is connected to. Code requires that chimneys be three feet over the roof and two feet over any other part of the roof that is within 10 feet. > News > Renovation & Design > Sealing unused chimney need not be a complicated task, By: Ari Marantz According to VA chimney experts there is no code stating how I have to seal the thimble. I have a chimney that needs repointed and do not currently use. Make sure that it is clear of any extraneous debris. Closing Off An Unused Or Abandoned Thimble Port. The key to capping the top of the chimney is to install a barrier that will be moisture and tamper resistant and will not be affected by environmental factors such as snow, wind and sunlight. ©2015 Winnipeg Free Press. Both of these should become a non-issue if you properly air seal the former chimney openings top and bottom. The goal is to not permanently seal it with fire brick and refractory mortar - … Using a Sealer for your Fireplace. A moderately skilled homeowner may be able to tackle the exterior repairs, as long as proper safety precautions are taken. Using removable fasteners -- such as special galvanized or stainless steel screws -- will ensure the cap can be removed in the future. Waterproofing and sealing a chimney can be vital to its structural integrity. One of the most significant reasons for having an unused chimney and fireplace sealed is the improvement of air quality. Thankfully the resources on the internet will be very beneficial in helping you get the job done. To stop your chimney from being a major source of heat loss you need to insulate inside the chimney from the top and bottom, in addition to insulating the exterior. We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. Such reasons may differ from one person to the other. The following information should help you comprehend better; This is also known as the chimney balloon and serves as a plug that fits into the chimney bottom. A retired chimney should be sealed only at the top or bottom. Another reason for being unable to use a chimney has to do with local ordinances prohibiting the use of wood as burning fuel for chimneys. Apply a bead of butyl rubber caulk around three sides of the chimney at the top, and set the cut piece of metal on the chimney so the edges line up with the caulk bead. Usually unused chimneys are capped off with a bent sheet metal covering and perhaps a wire strap or weight on the top. This has to be systematic. The chimney flues connect the fireplaces internally to the chimney pots externally, lots of people with more than one or two chimney flues are often confused on which pot belongs to which fireplace inside the house. The bottom is even easier. I have also had some condensation enter the basement by way of the clean-out. Locate the chase cap of the fireplace, which is the pipe that lets out its smoke. Being unable to use a chimney may be due to multiple reasons. Whether you’re thinking about sealing up your chimney and fireplace temporarily or permanently, the information here will guide you on how to go about closing it. Put a ventilated rain cowl/cap on the chimney pots. If you wish to temporarily seal up an unused chimney, there are effective ways to go about it. So, how should you maintain balance when sealing your chimney to prevent energy loss? Modifications can be made also to the existing structure. When moisture gets trapped due to the absence of ventilation, it adversely affects the chimney. What results is a situation where energy escapes. Unused chimneys not only waste a lot of heat, they also pose a potential damp problem as well as being a cause of smoking fireplaces and stoves. This is followed by the cementing of masonry using special bricks known as air-flow bricks to aid with ventilation. In most cases, the need to seal a chimney will be due to it being underutilized or completely unused. The oil furnace used the chimney to exhaust its combustion gases. by adminchi | Feb 2, 2018 | Blog | 0 comments. Corey Binford 138,018 views. This will allow air to pass through the chimney and help prevent problems caused by moisture. It is assumed that you do not have plans of renovating or remodeling your chimney in the nearest future. You’ll find the perfect fit for your chimney. If you wish to temporarily seal up an unused chimney, there are effective ways to go about it. It is obviously not in use anymore, as my new high- efficiency furnace uses PVC piping for intake and exhaust through the side wall of my house. I have noticed some debris like leaves and bird feathers sitting in the clean-out in my basement. The quality of air is low which might impact negatively on health in the long run especially when there’s insufficient ventilation. The most difficult part of sealing your old chimney is at the top, due to obvious concerns with height and safety. When implementing such modifications, however, it’s necessary to ensure you make provisions for ventilation as discussed earlier. Sealing your older, unused chimney should not be a complicated task as long as attention is paid to prevention of air intrusion, as well as environmental and pest control. The chimney is brick with two clay tile liners running through it. Sealing an unused chimney. Seems pretty extreme and unreversible. Even a bungalow with a very steep roof and a chimney top well above the eave may require temporary installation of scaffolding to ensure a safe worksite. Whatever the reasons may be, sealing a chimney and fireplace the right way is more important. Are you able to provide me with some guidance here? If you want an easy way to temporarily block and unused fireplace flue to stop a draft, you should consider installing a top sealing damper. How to Seal an Unused Fireplace and Save Money on Heating Bills. I have caps on both. For that reason, installing a galvanized or painted-steel chimney cap is the most common option. It is important however to maintain an equilibrium when sealing an unused chimney and fireplace. Answer: It is true that myself and others have recommended capping off an older, unused chimney to prevent moisture and air-leakage issues, but we have been vague about specific methods. There are different approaches to doing this. Unused, though, they can waste a lot of heat up the chimney. Inflatable sealers serve as chimney stoppers. Wood, kindling, and other materials that may travel up the chimney must be at a minimum of two inches away from the outer part of the chimney. That way, the structure remains and gets sufficient ventilation while adding to your home’s feel and look. Installing a metal cap on the top of the chimney will solve the pest, debris and rain concern, but some air leakage may still be possible due to the imperfect fit. Capping unused chimneys - flue ventilators UK Unused chimneys not only waste a lot of heat, they also pose a potential damp problem as well as being a cause of smoking fireplaces and stoves. It is important to be extra careful in scouting for the right professionals. Certain fireplaces are pieces of art. There is no need to remove the fireback from the fireplace, although if a back boiler is fitted, this should be removed once the plumbing has been isolated and disconnected. What energy? In that situation repairs can be done fairly quickly while supplies are temporarily stored on the roof adjacent to the chimney. You can also seal the edges with foam weatherstripping tape, too. One is an inflatable balloon-type product that will seal the flue. This can be costly to rent and may require more time to set up and break down than the repair itself. Sealing an unused chimney and fireplace is necessary as it helps keep it safe. Chimneys are major sources of energy loss as they drive up the cost of utility. Flue sealers can be found at chimney supply and masonry stores, and can be purchased from many online retailers. Last season I replaced my extremely old oil furnace with a high-efficiency propane furnace. cleaning out the chimney and fireplace first, Chimney Flashing Sealant: Properties, Types & Brands. The chimney runs up along the exterior wall. If the liner is quite rusted in any location, it is a good idea to remove it and cap the top of the chimney with a metal flashing or thick mortar bed. Seal Unused Chimney Flue Top, Air Leaks, Heat Loss, Damp, Water Entry ... Sealing a Chimney - DIY - Air Tight removable seal - Duration: 2:39. This is meant to limit the buildup of creosote as well as gas leakages. Sealing it completely may affect some form of ventilation.