Fireplace Repair Atlanta

At Chimney Mischief we do a lot of fireplace repair. Although we serve all of metro Atlanta on a daily basis, we are located intown and a large number of the calls and referrals we get are from intown homeowners with older homes. It is only natural that they have fireplaces that may need some repair.

The firebox often needs minor repairs (or very often re-repair of improper work) ranging from pointing between firebrick, fixing loose firebrick, replacing some or all of the firebrick, and removing and enlarging the firebox for wood or a new gas burning feature. Repairing the floor of the firebox or removing the floor and adding a new one is also common, as this the area of highest heat and therefore highest safety concern. We have various special heat resistant materials that must be used and applied correctly in the firebox area. Chimney Mischief is the premiere Atlanta fireplace repair company.

Right above the firebox (with the throat damper-see below) is the somewhat pyramid shaped smoke chamber, the most critical part of the fireplace for proper draft. They come in an infinite number of shapes and sizes. As a brick mason myself for 25 years it is easy for me to see the skill level of the mason that originally built a particular fireplace just by viewing the smoke chamber, as it requires by far the most skill to complete correctly. Because of limited access, repairs in this area when necessary can be difficult. The standard of a smoke chamber being at least 2 bricks thick (8”) has always been the case, and almost all masons followed this rule, so major safety issues in smoke chambers are rare. As I stated previously most issues involve the draft.

fireplace repair Atlanta, GA

A smoke chamber does not need to be parged (stucco on the inside of a surface) with cement in order to be safe. There are many chimney/fireplace companies that try to sell this coating as a necessity, and almost every time I have been called in to inspect for another opinion I would honestly say it follows their pattern of over selling. If you are building a fireplace, a parge coat is a great feature to have in the smoke chamber to facilitate draft and make the fireplace easier to clean, if an existing smoke chamber is built correctly (8 inches thick) and not damaged there is no additional measure of safety provided by parging. The fact that the smoke chamber is normally completely enclosed behind walls makes complete inspection inside and out impossible unless a home is under going a major renovation.

If there is a throat damper it will be at the top of the firebox where the smoke chamber starts. Years ago there were many different damper companies and designs. Not all were adequate for the job, and their placement and design many times would be a determining factor in how well the fireplace worked, although the inexperienced person would likely never figure this out. Repairs or modifications if diagnosed and performed correctly can make a definite difference.

At the top of the smoke chamber begins the chimney stack, which starts below and finishes above the roofline. Homes built before about 1930 may have just the stack of brick (one or two bricks thick) or stone (not surprisingly mostly granite in the Atlanta area). Terra cotta flue liners were developed in the late 20’s to go inside the chimney stack and provide an extra measure of safety for one brick thick chimneys which is the vast majority. The part of the chimney above the roofline is exposed to weathering (freeze/thaw cycle) on all four sides and the top (called the chimney crown). This area is often in need of repair. A mason’s skill level also comes strongly in to play here, as well as the quality of the chimney material and mortar mix. Trust us for all of your fireplace repair needs in Atlanta, GA. A chimney can need repair as soon as a year after it is built. If a mason properly takes into account all of the variables, a chimney should last 100 years, and I have seen some existing 70-80 year old chimneys in remarkable shape. Advanced waterproofing materials when properly applied by a professional can radically extend the life of a chimney that otherwise may need major repairs sooner. Those found at home improvement stores are much less effective and weaker to hit a price point.

Deterioration at the chimney crown at some point is inevitable. As the most exposed area even the best cement based crowns will at some point need some work. If it is major, masonry material will have to be removed and re-applied. If it is still in good shape but starting to show signs of wear than a coating is a good investment. There are many different coatings for the chimney crown and I have tried them all. All acrylic base coatings will eventually fail, often before the normal 10 year warranty. Atlanta fireplace repair is our business and we take it very seriously. Crownguard by Firesafe Industries is the best, and with proper application will last forever. One only needs to get within 10 feet of an open can to know this is some serious stuff.

Repairs to the inside of the chimney stack ( either with or without an existing terra cotta liner) will be discussed under chimney lining.

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Chimney Mischief
2064 Briarcliff Rd.
Suite 109
Atlanta Ga 30329
(404) 377-1254 ‎

Atlanta’s Chimney Company:

We are the chimney company in Atlanta, GA that you can rely on for honesty and reliability. Our Atlanta chimney sweeps have many years of experience in the chimney and fireplace industry. Call us today and get a consultation about your chimney maintenance or custom chimney construction needs. We also service Sandy Springs, Dunwoody, Marietta, and the surrounding areas.