An Objective Insight into Different Types of Chimney Liners
If you think that you do not need a good chimney liner or that your chimney can keep on working without one – you are quite wrong. A liner is not just any piece your sweeper insisted on installing, but a vital part of the chimney because, without it, byproducts of combustion would not be able to get out of your chimney. Here is why liners are important and what types you can find on the market.
When it comes to cleaning chimneys, most professionals agree that this should be at least once a year. While there can never be an exact answer, this period is the most common. However, if you notice that there is a problem with the chimney or suspect that birds have made a nest inside it, contact a sweeper at once.
Nevertheless, a chimney inspection is not just about looking up a chimney and determining whether you can see the sky through it, but much more. If you do not have a liner at the moment or your sweeper recommended getting a new one, be sure to do this before the winter comes. Also, if your existing liner is defective, react immediately before it becomes a fire hazard. Finally, when it comes to choices, there are three main types – clay tile, cast-in-place and metal liners.
Clay Tile Liners
Unless your house was designed and built several centuries ago, the chances are that you already have a clay tile liner. In a recent conversation with reputed plumbers from Monmouth County, it was brought to my attention that this type has been very popular since the beginning of the 20th century and you can still find it in many homes all over the world. The reason for this is quite simple – the construction and material. Namely, clay can endure very high temperatures that have to be taken into account when it comes to fire and fireplaces. Additionally, it cannot be easily affected by corrosion created by smoke and gasses, which is always good.
However, even though clay liners can easily work for longer than half a century, they are not perfect. While clay itself is quite cheap and easy to obtain, it is the production and installation of these liners that makes their price higher than you might expect.
If chimney on your house is crooked, chipped or in a bad shape, this is the option for you. A cast-in-place liner will reinforce your chimney and prepare it for the cold season. Moreover, these liners as also easy to make and, therefore, not that pricey either. Finally, they are long-lasting and you can be sure that they will extend your chimney’s life for additional fifty years.
Similar to the previously mentioned option, cast-in-place liners are tricky to install – and it is easy to understand why. Imagine having to pump a mortar mix directly into a chimney or, to be precise, around a rubber bladder that is placed inside it and used to create this type of a liner. And making sure you do not make a wrong move. It is not even easy to imagine this process, let alone complete it.
Usually made from stainless steel, metal liners – whether rigid or flexible – are the best option for straight chimneys. They will give it additional protection, provide insulation and adjust to the temperature inside the chimney. Even so, in order to prevent corrosion and rust, make sure you use correct alloy and insulation. If you insulate the chimney properly from the inside, you will minimize the chances for condensation, and, consequently, avoid corrosion.
The Bottom Line
When comparing these three options, you can notice that metal liners are, unlike clay tile and cast-in-place options, easy to install and are not hard to maintain. Therefore, they may the best choice, but that does not mean that the other two are not worth looking into, especially if you hire an experienced professional.