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Full-Width Chimney Cap vs Flue Cap Cover

Not all things called “chimney caps” are created equal. In this article, the chimney pros at Advanced Chimney Sweep of Georgia and South Carolina would like to clear up any confusion and explain a little about full-width, outside mount chimney caps and basic flue covers.

Full-width chimney cap, Columbia SCFull-width caps are like umbrellas for your chimney

The best way to understand the difference between an outside-mount, full-width chimney cap and a simple flue cover is to imagine the difference between an umbrella and a cowboy hat in a rainstorm.

Proper chimney caps cover the entire top of your chimney. They’re constructed with a central peak that causes water from rain and snow to run off the cap and down and away from your chimney structure.

Full-width caps also protect the all-important flue opening to prevent internal water intrusion that can lead to chimney liner damage, masonry deterioration and harmful mold growth.

Flue caps are designed to protect only the flue opening. This is an important measure, but it’s not enough. With just a flue cap, the vulnerable chimney crown is left unprotected and can easily absorb water through its cracks, leading to interior damage as described above.

Water and chimneys don’t mix

Out of all the chimney repair projects we undertake, a great many of them are necessary because of some level of water damage. The term “leaky chimney” can refer to any situation in which water is intruding into the chimney’s bricks and mortar or seeping into interior areas of the chimney or home.

Cracked or deteriorated chimney crowns, which are usually built from concrete, are common sources of destructive chimney leaks. Because the crown sits at the very top of a chimney, it’s not something homeowners normally see, which means gradual damage can continue without being noticed.

While concrete is strong, it’s prone to cracking over time. A sturdy full-width chimney cap offers the very best protection against water intrusion in the crown.

Protection against outside debris and animals

Both chimney caps and flue covers protect your chimney from falling tree debris and small-animal invasion. Debris along with animal nesting material can cause a serious blockage in your flue and lead to smoke and dangerous carbon monoxide backing up into your home.

Finally, both of the components we’re looking at here are designed to help prevent flying sparks and embers from leaving the top of your chimney and landing on your roof or in the yard.

We recommend full-width, outside-mount chimney caps

If your chimney has no cover of any kind, you need to arrange for installation quickly to help protect against a leaky chimney, among other things. If you have just a flue cover, consider upgrading to a fine new full-size cap for complete protection. Our crew will be happy to install the component of your choice.

Advanced Chimney Sweep serves the Central Savannah River Area and the South Carolina Midlands region including Augusta GA, Martinez GA, Evans GA, Dearing GA, Hephzibah GA, Lexington SC, Columbia SC, Orangeburg SC, Aiken SC, and all areas in between.

Give us a call at (706) 833-4630 in Georgia or (803) 508-3990 in South Carolina. You also can reach us through our easy contact form.