When you have an older masonry chimney, you may believe that it is immune from any damage because it is constructed well enough to last for a lifetime. However, a masonry chimney can suffer from both exterior and interior damage. You may have seen a chimney with cracked and missing bricks on its exterior, which is most likely caused by erosion from weather elements. The inside of a masonry chimney can also be damaged, and this type of damage is much harder to see. Most masonry chimneys were built with clay tile flue liners, and these tiles can also crack and even fall from the chimney wall. This can lead to a hazardous situation, including carbon monoxide leaking through the cracks and gaps into your home. The Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA)-certified chimney sweeps from Weststar Chimney Sweeps have years of experience of inspecting and repairing clay tile liners. We would like to tell you more about clay tile flue liners and how we can repair them so that your chimney works safely.

Chimney Flue Vulnerability - San Diego CA-Weststar Chimney Sweeps, Inc-w800-h800
How does a clay tile liner work?

When the chimney is being built, masonry workers will stack clay tiles upon each other, and according to Inspect-a-Pedia, refractory cement is placed in the joints in between these tiles to create a continuous smooth walled vent. There should be a space of one half of an inch to one inch in between the flue and the masonry surround because when the flue is heated, the liner expands outward and lengthwise.

How does a clay tile liner become damaged?

The most common reason behind the damage done to clay tile liners is water penetration. This type of damage can be prevented with the installation of a good quality chimney cap, along with a customized flashing system. Chimney fires can also cause a lot of damage to clay tiles. And, of course, these tiles can crack and break apart over the years as normal wear and tear.

How can Weststar Chimney Sweeps repair my clay tile liner?

We are proud to offer chimney relining and restoring services with HeatShield, a specially formulated cerfractory sealant. Our chimney technicians have been trained and approved to use this revolutionary product that allows us to restore and repair clay tile liners in a much easier way than retiling the flue. If your flue is mostly damaged by weakened mortar joints, we can use the HeatShield Joint Repair system, and if your flue has more widespread damage, we can use the HeatShield Resurfacing system. We also can use the HeatShield Sleeve Relining System to restore a clay tile liner that has been damaged significantly. You can trust us to inspect the condition of your liner to know exactly which HeatShield system to use.

If you have seen broken pieces of clay tiles in the bottom of your fireplace, you most likely have a damaged liner. Contact us at Weststar Chimney Sweeps to schedule an appointment for an inspection of your clay tile liner. We will be able to show you photos of the damage within the flue and make repair recommendations to make your chimney safe to use again.