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CHIMNEY INSPECTION DIAGNOSIS REPAIR
BACKDRAFTING HEATING EQUIPMENT
CARBON MONOXIDE - CO
CHIMNEY COMPONENT DEFINITIONS
CHIMNEY FIRE ACTION / PREVENTION
COMBUSTION GASES & PARTICLE HAZARDS
COMBUSTION PRODUCTS & IAQ
FLAME COLOR, BLUE vs YELLOW COMBUSTION
HEATING SYSTEM INSPECTION
HOME HEATING SAFETY
ODORS & SMELLS DIAGNOSIS & CURE
SAFETY RECALLS CHIMNEYS VENTS HEATERS
STAIN DIAGNOSIS on BUILDING EXTERIORS
WOOD, COAL STOVES & FIREPLACES
WOOD STOVE SAFETY
Catalog of chimney interior flue inspection methods & techniques: this article describes various methods that can be used to make a visual inspection of the interior of a chimney flue. Inspection methods taking advantage of existing openings such as at barometric dampers or chimney thimbles and cleanout doors can tell a lot about the condition of a chimney interior even though a complete view of the entire flue is not available.
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Metal chimney flue liners have to be inspected by removing the vent connector from the chimney breach to check for corrosion. Sight up the liner with a mirror to check straightness, rust, holes, heavy creosote, leak evidence, and for metal flue blockage.
Metal chimney flue interiors & metal chimney liners have to be inspected from the chimney top and inside by removing the vent connector from the chimney breach to check for corrosion. Sight up the liner with a mirror to check straightness and for blockage.
Even when a home inspector cannot see much of the chimney flue through such a limited access opening, certain observations can be critical, such as:
A chimney thimble is a sleeve embedded in the chimney wall designed to accept the flue connector from an appliance. They must be placed with the chimney end flush with the inside wall of the flue lining and cemented in place with the refractory mortar used in the flue tiles.
The thimble is the masonry or clay or insulated metal sleeve that provides an entry passage for a metal flue vent connector to enter a masonry chimney.
The most common defect we see at the chimney thimble is failure to seal the metal flue at the entry to the chimney flue.
A broken or short thimble can allow combustion gases to rise in the air space between the flue liner and the masonry surround. Condensation stains will often appear in the mortar joints and as streaks running down the exterior face of the chimney. Wood or oil burners leave soot that leaches out as black streaks.
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