Contractor Tips Blog

Mar
31

Masonry Concerns When Buying a New Home

Posted in Masonry

You find the perfect home for your family and you want to secure the deal with a down payment. Before you write that check, you need to make sure that you are buying a home that is structurally sound. While it is common to have a general home inspection, these basic inspections do not always catch hidden issues that could cost you thousands of dollars down the road. Masonry and foundation problems can often be difficult to catch by a general contractor; it may be worth getting a masonry expert to complete an inspection before you buy.

Chimney Inspections

One area that can get overlooked is the chimney. While a quick external inspection of the chimney will be done, this can easily miss hidden problems. You will want a closer look at the chimney, especially if it is an older home. A masonry expert can perform a more detailed chimney inspection to ensure there isn’t structural damage inside the chimney that could lead to fires and other expensive issues down the road.

Foundation Problems

Foundation issues come in many forms and may not be immediately noticeable during a basic inspection. If there is even a slight sinking or unstable component in the foundation, it can put the entire home at risk. A foundation or masonry expert can take a closer look at footings and other elements to ensure the home and other structures like decks have a solid, safe foundation underneath.

It is worth the extra investment for a masonry inspection to be performed on a home you plan to buy. If there are issues, you can negotiate to have them fixed before the sale or have the cost of repairs taken off the sale price.

Posted on behalf of:
Anglin’s Foundation & Masonry Repairs
1027 Oregon Trail
Marietta, GA 30008
(770) 422-2924

Oct
4

Why Damaged Chimneys are Dangerous

Posted in Masonry

Your chimney is essential to allowing you to have a fireplace inside your home and still have breathable air. It allows smoke to escape and air to feed the fire in small doses. However, if you have a masonry chimney that has begun to lean or shows signs of damage, it may be putting your home and family in danger. Chimney repairs are not something you should procrastinate about fixing as they can potential be harmful, even when you are not using your fireplace.

Masonry chimneys can last for many decades when maintained. Occasional cleanings and small repairs to bricks is often all that is needed to keep them safe and intact. However, they do depend on a solid foundation to stay stable; sinking foundations can cause a leaning chimney that can come crashing down at any time. In addition, you can have a small chimney fire without knowing it that can damage the masonry from the inside out.

Once the integrity of the chimney is compromised, it becomes a dangerous element in your home. Single bricks can topple, endangering those below, or the entire chimney could fall, putting your family and home at risk. If the interior has been damaged, there is a higher chance that a small chimney fire can spread to the rest of your home instead of being contained inside the flue walls.

Considering the dangers, it is never a good idea to put off a chimney repair. If you notice your chimney is leaning or has cracks, call a masonry expert for an inspection. It is not worth the risk to your home and family – get your chimney repaired as quickly as possible.

Posted on behalf of:
Anglin’s Foundation & Masonry Repairs
1027 Oregon Trail
Marietta, GA 30008
(770) 422-2924

Jul
21

Buying a New Home? Don’t Forget the Chimney Inspection

Posted in Masonry

When you are searching for a new home, you want to ensure that this giant purchase is protected. It is standard to have a home inspection performed to understand any possible problems with the house. While this can cover many aspects from the foundation to the structural integrity, it does not cover everything. If your potential home has a fireplace and masonry chimney, add a high level chimney inspection to your list of ‘do’s” before you buy.During a standard home inspection, they will generally include an inspection the chimney for damage. However, this is a very basic look for any obvious problems. If the chimney is leaning or has visual damage to the structure, it will most likely be caught. However, big problems could be lurking under the surface of a chimney that looks structurally sound.

There are many different components in a chimney and factors that can affect the structure and safety. There are also different levels of chimney inspections that look at these components. Chimney inspections come in three levels, with number three being the most comprehensive. The levels include:

  • Level 1. A basic inspection of the accessible areas of the chimney for any problems, including the interior, exterior and connections.
  • Level 2. The next level goes above and beyond level 1 by also inspecting deeper into the chimney with a camera, plus other areas like the basement or attic. In many cases a level 2 is required for selling a home – check with your realtor.
  • Level 3. Level 3 is the most comprehensive inspection available, uncovering any structural issues that may be hiding inside the chimney.

Don’t risk an expensive chimney problem down the road. Insist on a level 3 chimney inspection by an experienced masonry company, especially on older homes with fireplaces, before you buy.

Posted on behalf of:
Anglin’s Foundation & Masonry Repairs
1027 Oregon Trail
Marietta, GA 30008
(770) 422-2924

Jan
10

Dangers of Chimney Damage

Posted in Masonry

Your chimney is a crucial part of your heating system, doing much more than just keeping smoke out of your home. It dispels dangerous gases that can be deadly to your family, while helping keep the right air flow needed to maintain your fire. Maintaining your chimney should be a top priority; this includes regular cleanings and repairs. Most homeowners that use wood heat understand the dangers of a dirty chimney, but chimney damage can be just as dangerous.

A loose brick or hole in your chimney can put your home and family at risk. Once the chimney structure is compromised, there are many possible hazards you can face. Here are a few of the dangers of allowing your chimney to function when it needs a repair:

  • Gas exposure. Any blockage or leak in the chimney structure can allow hazardous gases to escape into your home. Many of these gases are poisonous and can even cause death.
  • If one brick is loose, others may be as well. If these bricks come loose at the wrong time, they can cause serious injury to anyone who happens to under them when they fall.
  • Damage to your chimney can create a fire hazard. A chimney repair is much less expensive than needing to replace your home and furnishings, not to mention the danger it poses to your family.

If you notice any loose bricks or that your chimney is leaning, call your local masonry repair company right away for an inspection and repair. Chimney repairs can protect your home and family from extensive harm and are worth the investment.

Posted on behalf of:
Anglin’s Foundation & Masonry Repairs
Marietta, GA
(770) 422-2924

Jun
23

Buying a New Home? Don’t Skip the Chimney Inspection

Posted in Contractors

Shopping for a new home can be daunting. There are so many factors to consider: size, location, amenities, price and so much more. You have a grocery list of items you want in a home, including structural integrity. No one wants to buy a home and then find out six months down the road it needs a major repair. Although all homes receive an inspection before sale, a general inspection may not reveal hidden issues.  If the home you want to buy has a chimney, don’t skip a specific chimney inspection before signing on the dotted line.

Hidden Chimney Problems

A general home inspection will detect a leaning chimney or one that has noticeable damage to the masonry. However, unless the issue is visible from the outside, many chimney problems will get missed. Level I or II inspections rarely catch chimney issues that are not visible. There are structural issues within the chimney that can lead to major chimney repairs and even full chimney replacement. A chimney that is unstable can become a hazard to your home as well as your family; a falling chimney can cause serious, even fatal, injuries.

If you are considering buying a home with a chimney, take the extra step of getting a qualified chimney inspection. These inspections can uncover any hidden problems within the structure, giving you the option of asking for these issues to be fixed before you buy. If the chimney passes inspection, you have the peace of mind that you won’t need a major chimney repair in the near future.

When scheduling your chimney inspection, make sure to use an honest, reputable masonry company with many years of experience in chimney repairs and replacements.

Posted on behalf of:
Anglin’s Foundation & Masonry Repairs
Marietta, GA
(770) 422-2924

Dec
3

Signs Your Masonry Chimney Needs Repair

Posted in Masonry

If you have a brick or masonry chimney that is decades old, it is important to know the signs of disrepair. A damaged chimney can be very dangerous; it can put your home at risk of a chimney fire or the chimney could fall, causing injury or property damage. Here are a few signs that it may be time to schedule a chimney inspection:

  • White substance. The white substance that accumulates on chimneys is called effloresence and is caused by excess moisture. While this white staining is not harmful, it is a sign of too much moisture that can damage your masonry.
  • Leaning chimney. Masonry chimneys depend on a solid, even foundation. If a chimney is leaning, the foundation most likely has settled. It is only a matter of time before gravity wins the war and the structure begins to fall.
  • Cracks and spalling. When the masonry begins to show signs of erosion, you need chimney repair. Cracks between the bricks and spalling, which is when pieces of masonry begin chipping off the outside of the chimney, are signs of damage from erosion or moisture.
  • Shaling. Sometimes the problem is inside the chimney. Shaling is when small shingles begin to fall off inside the flue, accumulating in the fireplace. If the flue lining is damaged it can put your home at risk for a fire, so don’t wait to schedule an inspection.

Considering the important role your chimney places in your heating system, it is vital to keep it in good repair. If your chimney has any of these signs, schedule a chimney inspection with your local chimney service contractor that handles masonry and foundation repairs.

Posted on behalf of:
Anglin’s Foundation & Masonry Repairs
Marietta, GA
(770) 422-2924

Nov
21

Will Your Chimney Last the Winter?

With the colder weather and holiday months upon us, it’s time to enjoy the heat that can only come from a roaring fire. However, to safely enjoy your fireplace, you must have a chimney which is properly functioning and in good repair. Over time, brick or stone chimneys can begin to lean, causing them to become an eyesore or worse, a hazard. If you have a chimney with structural problems, you need to have it repaired before it causes further damage to your home and ruins the upcoming holiday season. 

Causes of Leaning Chimneys

Brick or masonry chimneys that are leaning are a definite hazard, and need to be repaired. The heavy weight of these structures can cause them to become unstable, crumbling or toppling down with the pull of gravity or during a storm. This can cause damage to your home, property, and even injure a family member or pet. 

Most leaning chimneys are caused by a foundation problem. The footing the chimney rests upon may be sinking or cracking, making the chimney lean. An experienced foundation or chimney repair company can inspect your leaning chimney, and offer repair solutions before it causes more expensive damage to your home or family. It may need the footing repaired, as well as masonry repairs to the chimney, or even a full chimney replacement. 

Don’t let a leaning chimney ruin your holiday season. Have your leaning chimney repaired now to prevent any avoidable accidents.  Enjoy the winter months with a comforting fire, knowing your chimney is steady and stable, doing its job while you relax by the fireplace with your family.

Posted on behalf of:
Anglin’s Foundation & Masonry Repairs
Marietta, GA
(770) 422-2924

 

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