Home>Discussions>EXTERIORS>Leaking chimney and fireplace for a hip roof house - advice?
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Kimikerr
Leaking chimney and fireplace for a hip roof house - advice?
Kimikerr

We purchased our home in 2004(built in 1986). It is a brick front colonial. The chimney leaked a lot and we tried many repairs, including a new cap, sealing and re-roofing. The bricks were spalling and in despair, we had the chimney demolished and rebuilt. The underlay was replaced, new siding and gutters added, plus a new larger chimney cap. Our chimney is still leaking after having been rebuilt 5 years ago. The mason and contractor have tried EVERYTHING. They are completely stymied. The water seems to come down the inside wall. From time to time we have many gallons of water. We have a new cricket and flashing and the contractor has caulked every crevice and the mason has sealed the chimney.

We are so frustrated and wonder if anyone has any suggestions. Thank you.

dj1
Re: Leaking chimney and fireplace for a hip roof house - advice?
dj1

Here is a suggestion: show us pictures of the chimney from the outside, all around and from the inside where the leaks are.

I have a hunch that the flashing is done wrong, and that's a job for an experienced roofer.

To load pics, use a host like photobucket, then post the link here.

HoustonRemodeler
Re: Leaking chimney and fireplace for a hip roof house - advice?
HoustonRemodeler

Do you have flashing AND counter-flashing ?

Kimikerr
Re: Leaking chimney and fireplace for a hip roof house - advice?
Kimikerr
HoustonRemodeler wrote:

Do you have flashing AND counter-flashing ?

Thank you. There is counterflashing, but appreciate the good thought. Keep them coming!

Kimikerr
Re: Leaking chimney and fireplace for a hip roof house - advice?
Kimikerr
dj1 wrote:

Here is a suggestion: show us pictures of the chimney from the outside, all around and from the inside where the leaks are.

I have a hunch that the flashing is done wrong, and that's a job for an experienced roofer.

To load pics, use a host like photobucket, then post the link here.

Thanks very much. We will post photos when we can get up on roof. It is possible the flashing should continue beyond roof to direct water into gutter. Right now there is a minute space between end of gutter and chimney and water could be running down between. Thank you.

A. Spruce
Re: Leaking chimney and fireplace for a hip roof house - advice?
A. Spruce

All too often designers and builders alike, opt for form OVER function, rather than combining the two cohesively. Don't even get me started on crickets, don't, just DON'T, and no, I'm not talking about the bugs.

Without seeing the convolution of what you've got, it's very difficult to offer opinions as to where the problem lies. As has been said, you need to host the images to the web somewhere, then link them here.

Fencepost
Re: Leaking chimney and fireplace for a hip roof house - advice?
Fencepost

Since I can't see what you've got going on, I will describe how flashing is properly installed:

Sealant should NEVER be used to block out moisture that is subject to gravity, because it will fail. The masonry, counterflashing, flashing, and roofing should all be applied in such a way that water flows smoothly from one to the other uninterrupted. Sealants and gaskets may be used to prevent wind-blown water from entering gaps.

Properly installed, the top edge of the counterflashing is embedded into the mortar between the masonry. Water flows from the bricks onto the counterflashing, from the counterflashing onto the flashing, and from the flashing onto the roof.

Where the slope of the roof meets the chimney, step flashing is installed (under the counter flashing). The step flashing is installed at the same time as the roofing shingles. One piece of flashing is installed on the top half of a shingle and bent upward against the chimney. Then the next shingle is laid on top of the flashing; the next piece of flashing is installed on the top half of that shingle, and so on.

The counterflashing overlaps the flashing, ideally by several inches. Water flows from the counterflashing onto the flashing. To block airflow between the counterflashing and the flashing, some kind of flexible gasket is used to allow for seasonal movement between the wood structure and the masonry chimney. The use of adhesive sealants here is not recommended, as the movement will cause failure.

(The above is written describing things top-down, as the water flows. Actual construction is done from the bottom up.)

The most difficult portion to flash is the corners of the chimney. It's really hard to make a flat piece of material (sheet metal) conform to surfaces at three different angles.

Another possibility is that you are getting wind-blown rain coming not from the roof, but from where the chimney meets the wall. (It sounds like your chimney is external to the structure of the house.) I don't really know the best way to seal that joint.

llmotoll
Re: Leaking chimney and fireplace for a hip roof house - advice?
llmotoll

+1 dj1 & Fencepost

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