What to Do About Mold in Your Chimney
Do you have mold inside your chimney? This is a tough question to answer, because most people aren’t sure one way or the other. It’s not easy to see all the way through a chimney.
Oliver Twist Chimney & Fireplace of Huntington Beach, CA, would like to share a little about moldy chimneys and what can be done about them.
Mold is a fungus, a living substance. Its ideal breeding ground is an area that’s dark, damp and poorly ventilated. Which perfectly describes most chimney flues.
Because it’s “alive,” mold grows and spreads. Some of its spores can become airborne and travel through the air to places far away from the original source.
Black mold and certain other species are known to cause severe health problems in people and animals. Upper-respiratory issues are common; in the worst cases, mold can even lead to death.
Preliminary chimney mold test
If you open the fireplace damper and take a strong sniff of your chimney, you might notice a damp, musty odor. That could indicate the presence of mold.
With a large outbreak, you might see dark patches of mold in the firebox or at the top of the exterior chimney. Performing a home mold test will tell you if there’s mold in your living environment, but it won’t necessarily tell you exactly where the mold is coming from.
Types of chimney leaks
Water can get into a chimney in various ways, including:
- Through a damaged (or missing) chimney cap
- Through cracks in the bricks and mortar of the masonry
- Through warped or unseated chimney flashing
- Through a broken concrete chimney crown
Addressing mold issues in your chimney
An annual chimney inspection is recommended, whether or not you have signs of mold.
Your chimney inspector will be able to see mold and other issues that you can’t see and recommend the best way to address them.
During an inspection for chimney mold, your inspector will look at the obvious causes, as listed above. He or she will explain to you the right way to resolve these problems. A thorough chimney sweeping will also be recommended.
Chimney sweeping involves a variety of scrubbers, brushes, whips and rods to remove the gunk inside your chimney flue. This gunk includes not only mold but also flammable creosote, soot and outside debris.
Once your chimney is clean and repairs have been made, the chances of chimney mold outbreaks in the future will decrease. Annual chimney service will keep it that way.
A clean, safe and healthy chimney all year long
Since 1987, Oliver Twist has provided expert chimney cleaning, chimney repairs and licensed chimney inspections for our Southland customers.
No matter what’s happening with your chimney, we know how to fix the problem and make your chimney clean, safe and healthy once again.
Reach one of our chimney experts today by calling (714) 843-9944. You can also get in touch with our simple contact form.