Removing an unused chimney.


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Old 12-09-12, 07:11 PM
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Removing an unused chimney.

I have a leak in my roof because of flashing that was badly installed by the previous owners of the home. There is a good bit of leaking around the chimney and I was thinking about just removing the chimney itself and putting in a regular roof section there. The inside of the chimney isn't visible inside the house (I can tell where it SHOULD be, but I'm not even sure if it's been taken out or if walls were just put up over it).

Is this doable? I'm new to DIY, so I don't know how difficult this would be for me.
 
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Old 12-09-12, 07:20 PM
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If you have an attic, just take the chimney down far enough to put in a new section of the roof over it. No need to go all the way down to the foundation. It is good to cap it over in the attic.

Just make absolutely there are no appliances using the chimney.

Dick
 
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Old 12-09-12, 07:26 PM
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As far as I know, there's nothing using the chimney. How do I know if it's being used for the furnace or something? The furnace is currently non-operational so I can't see if there's anything coming out when it's running. My husband's family built the house and has done all improvements on it, so it's all kind of knocked together however they felt like at the moment. It's hard to tell how things work sometimes.
 
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Old 12-10-12, 04:45 AM
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If the furnace were to become operational, where would it vent? If into the chimney, you probably can't just cap the chimney off. How about water heater? Where does it vent?
 
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Old 12-10-12, 05:08 AM
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If the chimney is unused, take the top off it and cap it within the attic (assuming it's not along the exterior of the house). This is what was done with mine and a section of roof was added to cover the hole.
If the chimney is an external one (runs along the outside of the house, but goes through part of the roof), again, take the top off below the roof line and cover with new roofing.

Before doing anything, figure out where the funace and hot water heater vent. If either (or both are electric, they will not vent anywhere).
 
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Old 12-10-12, 06:24 AM
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The hot water heater is gas, so I'm guessing it has to vent somewhere. We're getting it replaced in the next couple of years with a tankless electric water heater. The furnace is electric. We're thinking of updating the furnace next year, so I guess we'll probably just patch the chimney for now and take care of everything else at the same time when we do the new furnace.
 
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Old 12-10-12, 06:47 AM
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Confirm where the hot water is venting to and proceed if it's not using this chimney.

Slightly off topic:
I'd recommend not going electric instant hot water. If you need/want to go tankless instant hot water, stick with gas as it's more efficient and won't hurt the wallet so much.
The instant hot water vs. a hot water tank is still debatable. If you have a tank now and can live with the space being consumed by a tank, research and do the math before making the jump.
 
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Old 12-10-12, 05:02 PM
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Properly eliminating a flashing leak at your chimney is not some simple "patch job." You (or someone) will have to remove all of the existing flashing, then intertwine the new flashing in between the mortar joint openings that have been cleaned out, and then re-mortared. Be prepared to live with future leaks if you simply try to smear some sealant over the existing flashing.

If the water heater doesn't vent into it, I'd remove the existing chimney ASAP. I've partially removed 2 of them (below roof sheathing level), and both were reasonably simple jobs completed in less than half a day.
 
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Old 12-11-12, 04:24 AM
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Leaking Chimney

Build a cricket between the chimney and roof. Done properly, this will solve your leak problem.
 
 

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