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Old 03-10-2009, 05:43 PM   #1
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Painted Chimney.. Incorrectly?

I have an interior leak around my fireplace... have replaced/done everything except for waterproofing my chimney. At one time, the brick of my chimney was painted white. Well, I have since noticed that the bricks on the exterior of my chimney are starting to- forget the term, but basically the face of the brick is popping off due to vapor pressure trapped w/in the brick. So, my guess is that the brick was painted with a non-porous paint. I'd like to waterproof my chimney, but what do I do about the existing paint that is causing problems? Do I need to remove it & then waterproof? What would that entail?! Seems like it could be scary...


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Old 03-10-2009, 06:02 PM   #2
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Waterproofing the brick will not fix the leak. And I doubt built up moisture pressure blew out the brick sides. Have you been speaking to my brother in law?
Check the roof flashing to the chimney. Check to see if the brick work needs pointing. Is there a chimney cap in place? Is the masonary cap on the chimney deteriorated?


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Old 03-11-2009, 07:11 AM   #3
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Trapped moisture behind paint on brick is definately a problem. If moisture is trapped and subject to freezing, it will fracture the face of the brick and cause it to spall. If the bond strength of the paint is higher than the tensile strength of the brick, it can spall without freezing. This is particularly true on older, soft brick. You won't be able to effectively waterproof the brick with a layer of paint on it. I would recheck the flashing where-ever the brick meets the rest of the structure. Most leaks are in these areas, rather than through the brick. Flashing into the brick should be set into a reglet cut into the brick and fastened. It shouldn't just be set on the surface and caulked. Take a water hose and start low on the chimney, flowing water into suspect areas. Keep someone inside to observe and keep working higher until it leaks. That will help to pinpoint the area you need to concentrate on.
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Old 03-11-2009, 02:06 PM   #4
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What is the chimney used for! If it for a gas heater (furnace) it should have a liner! Gas gives off a lot of moisture when combusted, which goes up the flue! If there is no liner this moisture is absorbed into the brick and can cause spauling and paint flaking!
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Old 03-11-2009, 07:55 PM   #5
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Painted Chimney..

Here's the frustrating part about the painted chimney.. I first had the crown mortar rebuilt. Then I replaced the flashing. And then I caulked/realigned the siding where the chimney meets the house. Those were the first steps taken to fix the interior leak. I've even had the same people out to make sure they had done the work correctly bc the leak hadn't gone away. Flus inspected.. Caps installed. The last piece I keep reading about is waterproofing the chimney. However, the spalling is getting worse. If I have to waterproof the chimney, what about the pre-existing paint that may be causing the spalling? Waterproof over? I must conquer this leak!
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Old 03-12-2009, 05:06 AM   #6
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piecemeal repairs rarely work even if done in the right order,,, i'd hope/suspect the 1st to look at the problem had a full & complete ' fix ' in mind but was ignored,,, nevertheless, what's done is done.

instead of nickel & diming this chimney & yourself, tear down the painted brick & get it rebuilt,,, make yourself promise to never paint brick again pay attn while the work's being done so you can understand why water runs downhill

after a year or so, if you feel like it, wash down the stack w/brush & water, let dry, & give it a couple coats of silicone siloxane but that's not really necessary.

just 2 more hints - NEVER ask anyone to check his own work to be sure it was completed correctly as ' of course it was ! ' is often the answer,,, being the owner doesn't absolve you of knowing/understanding how good work shoujld be done,,, that's why job supts're important - they're not there to build the jobs - only to make sure the work's done correctly & sign tickets ! ! !


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