A Well-Fitted Chimney Cap Offers Longtime Protection
All chimneys should be open on top, right? If they weren’t, you would be left with smoke and other hazardous fumes tunneling right back into your home. But this presents a difficult situation when you consider that you essentially have a hole in your roof that can let in water, debris, animals, and more.
Fortunately, this is where chimney caps come into play. If you live in San Antonio or somewhere in the surrounding area, we can get you a quality chimney cap built from reliable materials, then get it installed correctly, fitted just right, and all set and ready to offer long-lasting protection for the long haul. And don’t forget to rely on us for any other chimney repair services you may need too.
What Is a Chimney Cap?
A chimney cap is exactly what it sounds like… a cap for your chimney. It fits over the top of the opening to keep out rain, animals, debris, and more. Chimney caps come in a range of styles, sizes, shapes, colors, and material types, so finding the perfect fit for your chimney and preferences shouldn’t be any problem whatsoever.
And without a cap in place, your chimney will be left open and vulnerable to well… pretty much anything that wants to enter it.
But wait… if the opening is covered, how will smoke come out?
No worries – industry experts have thought of it all. Chimney caps are equipped with mesh sides that effectively keep bigger items from sneaking in, while still allowing your chimney to appropriately vent out fumes. You’ll be able to use your system with ease and peace of mind, no problem.
To sum up… A chimney cap is a proper rain hood that we custom-fabricate for your chimney. Our chimney caps can be made of 24-gauge powder coated steel, stainless steel, galvalume, or copper. A proper chimney cap should keep the chimney fire safe, prevent water leakage, exclude all wildlife, and – most importantly – add to the aesthetic value of the home. All our chimney caps come with a limited lifetime warranty.
Are Chimney Caps Decorative or Functional?
As we’ve already covered, chimney caps definitely serve an important purpose. Fortunately, the answer to this question doesn’t have to be either/or… it can be both! Chimney caps do need to be functional in that they need to be fitted correctly to your flue and constructed based on your system’s unique needs.
That said, because chimney caps sit at the top of your chimney, they’re also quite noticeable, so we want them to look good too. We offer custom options, ensuring you get the exact look you’re hoping for, so that your chimney looks stylish and polished. This can also play a role in increasing your home’s value as well. Choose from copper, stainless steel, and more.
What Do Chimney Caps Do?
Chimney Caps are important for more than just looks. A professionally installed chimney cap from Wolfman Chimney and Wildlife can help ensure functionality and longevity, as well as block out uninvited guests. The main purposes of the cap is to block out water and keep moisture-related damages at bay, but chimney caps actually can serve a long list of functions, making them one of the most versatile pieces of your chimney’s anatomy. Let’s cover them all:
- Chimney caps keep water at bay. Water is your chimney’s biggest threat and it can cause damage in a number of ways – and to nearly every part of the system. Chimney caps are chimneys’ first line of defense against rain and bad weather, ensuring outside elements don’t have easy access to your system’s interior. A properly capped chimney can eliminate water and moisture entry which prevents deterioration.
- Chimney caps block out leaves and debris. An uncapped or improperly capped chimney will typically have debris accumulation which is a fire hazard. Windy days are bound to bring leaves, twigs, and other debris into an unprotected chimney. Your chimney cap – and its attached mesh screen – would ensure these items stay outdoors where they belong.
- Chimney caps safeguard against critters. Animals are drawn to the shelter and warmth of your chimney. It’s not uncommon for birds and woodland creatures (think squirrels, raccoons, opossums, etc.) to seek shelter in your sturdy, warm chimney flue. It’s perfect for hiding from predators and building nests. Unfortunately, come time to light a fire, this isn’t ideal for you or them. Keep them out, prevent damage, and access into the house by installing a proper chimney cap.
- Chimney caps stabilize chimney temperatures. Why would it matter what the temperature inside of your flue is? Because starting fires in cold flues can be a challenge – and it can send smoke back into your home too. In addition to this, cold flues can also lead to cooler indoor temps.
- Chimney caps prevent downdrafts. Downdrafts are a common complaint from homeowners without chimney caps and can cause excessive heating costs, as well as cause a backdraft of smoke into the house during a fireplace fire. No one wants outdoor winds swooping into their home, affecting indoor temps, hurting indoor air quality, and bringing in unwelcome chimney odors.
- Chimney caps protect your roof. This may seem confusing at first – but it’s true! Some fireplace fires are strong enough to send sparks and hot embers up your chimney, where they could land on your roof – or piles of leaves bunched up by your chimney – and create fire hazards. Caps stop them dead in their tracks.
- Chimney caps improve ventilation. A chimney that’s filled with outside debris won’t be able to vent properly, which not only decreases efficiency, but increases the risk of smoke, carbon monoxide, and other hazardous fumes entering your household.
- Chimney caps protect your chimney liner. Your chimney liner plays a vital role in keeping both your home and your chimney better protected – which then keeps your household safer from fumes and flames. Caps prevent water and debris from coming in and breaking it down.
- Chimney caps up your curb appeal. Chimney caps do a surprisingly great job at both improving the look of your chimney and personalizing it to your home and tastes. Boost curb appeal by picking out the perfect material and color for you.
As you can see, these components play a big role in keeping your chimney functioning well and in tip-top shape. Caps are relatively small and simple, but should never be underestimated. Best of all, they’re one of the more affordable pieces of your chimney’s setup and they’re fairly quick and easy to install (when done by a professional).
Can I Install a Chimney Cap Myself?
In theory… yes. But it’s highly advised against. First and foremost, let’s address the main reason homeowner’s opt for the DIY approach – money savings.
In the end, typically homeowners lose more money by attempting to install their own chimney caps. Keep in mind that the right chimney cap needs to be selected for your specific setup, and it needs to be installed correctly in order for it to do its job well. If either or both of these things are overlooked, then you’ll still experience chimney damage that will be costly to address – much more expensive than a professional chimney cap installation job would have been.
Throughout all of this, your cap itself is bound to face damage as well, so on top of repairs, you’ll need that replaced. And after experiencing damage, we’re guessing you’ll opt for a professional installation – and wishing you would have just trusted an expert in the first place.
There are also safety factors to consider. Installing a chimney cap means working on the top-most part of your chimney – which is typically on the top-most part of your roof. Chimney sweeps have the appropriate tools and harnesses to stay as safe as possible during this process.
Finally, having a chimney expert do the job means that any other potential issues can be spotted too. Certified techs will be able to note if water damage has already started to occur and can bring it to your attention, so that it doesn’t continue breaking things down.
How do chimney professionals approach chimney cap installs?
So, what can you expect from your chimney professional when you get this job booked?
Well, for certified and experienced experts (like the crew here at Wolfman Chimney & Fireplace) the process is actually quite straightforward. We’ll take appropriate measurements and assess what type and size of chimney cap you need, then present you with options for picking out materials, colors, and more.
Once you’ve decided on the right fit, we’ll move forward with installation, and in a matter of hours, your chimney will be equipped with quality protection from rain, animals, and more.
How Much Does a Chimney Cap Cost? Are They Expensive?
Chimney caps are actually known as one of the more affordable pieces of your chimney’s anatomy. That said, there are a number of chimney options on the market, and the cost of the cap plus the installation can vary based on a number of factors, such as the size and shape of your chimney, what the cap is made from, and the cap’s expected lifespan.
How can you know what the best option is for you? Well, clearly cheaper options are appealing due to being, well… cheaper, but keep in mind that they won’t last as long either. That means you’ll have to pay for labor and a new model sooner than you may have anticipated – or let it go and risk the chance of damage (which is also costly to address).
Sometimes, the more expensive and higher quality ones actually end up saving you more money, time, and stress down the line.
That said, we understand everyone’s needs and budgets are different, and we’re happy to work with you to determine the right path forward. One thing for certain, though – considering how much money these components save you over time, they are well worth any money invested.
Why Is Water Such a Big Threat to Chimneys?
Chimney caps do a lot – that’s clear – but their main purpose is to combat water and excess moisture.
Why is this important? Because water is the natural enemy of your chimney, affecting its durability and health in a variety of ways. It can destroy and crumble your masonry, rust metal components (yup, the chimney cap too), cause damage in your home (like rotted woodwork or stained ceilings), encourage clogs to form in your chimney, and more.
Needless to say, it takes lots of parts and services to keep water in check, like a well-built chimney crown, properly installed flashing, and waterproofing services.
So, what’s the chimney cap’s role in all of this?
The chimney cap is what keeps the water from actually entering the flue interior, which then branches out to help your chimney in a lot of ways, such as:
- keeping the chimney liner from breaking down
- preventing water from breaking down your interior masonry
- keeping water from pooling on your firebox floor
- blocking moisture that could break down your damper
- keeping water from settling on the smoke shelf
- reducing the risk of clogs and buildup
- minimizing the risk of foul odors forming in your flue
Your cap also works alongside the crown to send water away from your chimney’s outer walls.
So, are chimney caps a must-have for any chimney system? You bet.
I’ve Already Got Critters in My Flue… Now What?
In addition to keeping out water, we’d say the other thing caps are most well known for is keeping out animals. But if your cap wasn’t fitted right and a critter snuck in, then… now what?
We’ve got great news – we can help with that too! As long as the animal isn’t federally protected (like the chimney swift), we’d be happy to safely and humanely remove it for you. After which, we can clear out any excess debris, make sure no damages are present, and – you guessed it – get a new high-quality cap fitted, so you don’t have to deal with unwanted guests (at least of the animal variety) again anytime soon.
Don’t Wait – Call Our Experts Today
If you need a chimney cap installed, there’s no time to lose – get our qualified and experienced technicians on the job right away to avoid water damage, clogging, animal entry, and more. We’re known throughout Boerne, New Braunfels, Seguin, Canyon Lake, San Marcos, Kyle, and more for our high level of service, our willingness to answer your questions, and our commitment to providing personalized care.
We’re also certified with the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA), HeatShield®, and the Fireplace Investigation, Research & Education Service (F.I.R.E), and we’re members of the National Chimney Sweep Guild (NCSG). No worries about our level of expertise – when it comes to your chimney we definitely know our stuff.
So, don’t wait. When it comes to your chimney, prompt service is a must, and we’d love to ensure you’re all set and ready to light a fire whenever your heart desires.
Call us at 830-620-9130 or reach out to us online now to get started.