Repoint this chimney or larger issues?


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Old 03-13-23, 10:48 AM
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Repoint this chimney or larger issues?

I was going to install a cap on this chimney. Is the staining at the top a serious concern or just some mineral leaching out of the mortar?

more concerning is the area down by the roofline. Looks like there is some flashing installed between the bricks and some of the bricks are coming loose. This chimney is only 8 yrs old.
 
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Old 03-13-23, 10:53 AM
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Pictures, pictures…










 
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Old 03-13-23, 10:54 AM
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Was there supposed to be a picture?

Staining usually isn't structural. Often it comes from a steel chimney cap rusting or mold & mildew with age.

If you have loose bricks that is a problem and could need more than just repointing. There should be flashing tucked into the mortar joints near the roof so that part is normal if the mortar & flashing is in good condition.

 
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Old 03-13-23, 10:57 AM
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The white is effervescence, as water evaporates through the brick/mortar salts are deposited on the surface so it's an appearance item.

I cant speak to that step flashing, I don't recall ever seeing anything like that before, was it newly installed or original?

Skier picture looks ok, LOL!
 
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Old 03-13-23, 10:58 AM
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Pilot,
the pictures are now up. For some reason I have issues posting pictures along with text in the same post.
Not sure how the picture of my kid skiing got mixed in there. Sorry about that one.
 
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Old 03-13-23, 11:01 AM
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The step flashing is original to the chimney. Some loose bricks on the top of the flashing on the higher end. How would you address that?
Thx


 
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Old 03-13-23, 12:00 PM
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There must be some history to your chimney. Why was step flashing installed on the outer side where it wasn't needed? Was there originally house/roof on that side as well.

Loose bricks will need to be removed. The mortar chipped off and their spot in the chimney cleaned. Then they can be re-mortared in place. A step up from repointing since you'll essentially be replacing bricks.
 
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Old 03-13-23, 12:32 PM
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Definitely no history to the chimney. We had the home custom built from ground up. Just a crappy builder I guess.
 
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Old 03-13-23, 01:05 PM
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Not sure how the picture of my kid skiing got mixed in there. Sorry about that one.

Good form in the gate. Is that Mt Mansfield on her shirt? Does she compete for a school?. I used to ski VT. My kids and grand kids ski New Hampshire and Colorado.

I have a similar problem with my chimney. I discovered it early in the winter when a wind storm blew off a couple of ridge shingles. I had a mason look at it and he said some bricks will need to be replaced and others repointed. Not an exorbitant cost but not cheap either.
 
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Old 03-13-23, 02:14 PM
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More pics





Do these brick appear loose? There is definitely a gap where the step flashing is which makes me think something must have moved, but could it be that mortar came out on the right side of the flashing? This is very high off the ground. I know this is a do it yourself forum, but the height is giving me pause this time. It would be difficult to even get a boom lift into place below the chimney so I’m looking at scaffolding for this.
 
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Old 03-13-23, 02:29 PM
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I don't see loose bricks but that can be hard to spot from a photo. Usually it's best to give the brick a light tap. The sound will tell if it's loose and if it's loose you'll feel it move.

The flashing on the outside faces of the chimney could be removed since it serves no purpose. The flashing slots cut in the mortar could then be pointed/mortared over.
 
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Old 10-02-23, 04:02 PM
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I’m still trying to figure out what to do with this chimney. My plan is to patch the cracks in the crown of the chimney and install a full coverage chimney cap with a skirt/drip edge to minimize any water getting in from the top. I’ll also repoint anywhere there is loose or cracked mortar around the area where the flashing is.

Questions for those who know:
1. What do you recommend for repairing the cracks in the crown?
2. Do I simply remove any loose mortar and refill the joints with new mortar? Is there a specific type of mortar that I should be using. I’ve read Type somewhere I should use type N mortar. Is that correct?

Thank you!
 
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Old 10-03-23, 04:59 AM
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Yes, I would chip out and remove any loose mortar and mortar that is no longer attached to anything on one side. Type N mortar is good for repairs like this. There are two types. The kind with sand already in the mix is easier to use for repairs since all you have to do is add water.
 
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Old 10-03-23, 08:06 AM
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Great! Thanks Pilot Dane. Do I use the type N mortar to patch the crack in the crown and also re seal around the clay flu pipe? Should I grind out a larger crack to make room for a mortar joint of just cover the crack with a mound of mortar? I was thinking of using some concrete bonding adhesive with this. Good or bad idea?

Thanks again
 
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Old 10-03-23, 09:05 AM
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You can use type N in both locations. If mortar has come unstuck from one side, a hairline crack, I will grind or chip out to make enough room for new mortar.

Additional bonding agents won't hurt but I can almost guarantee that they were not used when the chimney was built, so it's not necessary. It can help adhesion but mortar doesn't flex much so if something moves there will be a crack with or without an additive.
 
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Old 10-25-23, 04:04 PM
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I’m finally ready to take on this project. I have a boom lift rented for Friday.
I’ll be installing a full coverage stainless chimney cap 63” x 33” with a 6” tall apron 360 degrees around the side of the crown. My plan is to fasten it through the apron into the brick or the mortar. Which is better choice? I was thinking into the brick with a plastic expanding anchors. I’ll squeeze some silicone into the hole in the brick before inserting the anchor and screws?

For the cracks in the crown, my plan is to grind out the crack and fill with type N mortar.

Question: what to do with the moss growing around the clay pipe on the crown? Instincts tell me to clean it up as best I can and apply some additional mortar almost like caulking around the clay pipe? Should I grind out some of the crown first? Or something else? I feel that the new cap will limit the amount of water getting to that area to very little. But I only want to do this once!

For the repointing of the brick down at the roofline, I’m going to chisel/grind out any loose mortar and add new type N mortar as needed.

Would love thoughts from you guys with experience on my plan and make any final suggestions.
I promise to take pics and share with you..

Thanks!
 
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Old 10-26-23, 06:07 AM
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The man lift is a great choice. Expensive but you can work much better when not in an awkward position on top of a ladder. Then there is the safety and comfort factor. Your still high up but standing on a platform with railing is a lot easier on my nerves then a tall, flexing ladder.

I would attach the cap into the mortar joints. That way you don't risk splitting a brick but you can go into the bricks if you want. The screws aren't under much load and just need to act like pins to prevent the cap from lifting off.

A bleach solution will kill any moss or algae you want to get rid of. Only repair what needs repairing. Just because something has moss growing on it doesn't mean it needs to be ground away and replaced.

For a small repointing project I don't bother with a grout bag. Instead I use a flat rectangular trowel and a small tapered one. I hold the flat trowel upside down (making a mini hock) and put a thin bead of mortar along the edge. Then hold the flat trowel right to the edge of the joint you want to fill. Then use the small trowel to slide the mortar into the joint. The flat trowel held right against the brick is great for catching any spilled mortar and to keep the face of the brick clean.
 
 

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