If you are face to face with a crumbling or broken chimney structure, then you’re likely eager to get repairs. We don’t blame you! A crackling fire or properly functioning heating appliance set the perfect mood for a chilly evening indoors. When you get the repairs your system needs, it will be ready for use when the cold returns. It will also guarantee a cozy and comfortable burning season for you and your family in the months ahead.
That being said, knowing what to pay for and which company provides the most reasonable price with the most value can be a challenge. If you have sought out multiple estimates for chimney repairs, you should consider the following guidelines.
Does The Chimney Company Have a CSIA Certification?
One thing to consider when reviewing estimates is whether or not the sweeps you are speaking with have a CSIA certification. If they aren’t, there is a good chance that their analysis may be off and may miss important factors. While they may fix issues, they could miss important safety considerations that only a Certified Sweep may detect. When seeking a chimney company for repairs or restoration, you should always look for a valid certification.
Why is having a certification important? Because sweeps that take the time to get this certification have shown that they take pride in their work. They’ve put in the time, training, and effort necessary to better themselves. They have also chosen to work with a company that is nationally recognized for their chimney and fireplace knowledge. Finally, CSIA certified sweeps follow a strict code of ethics. This ensures you are getting the most honest and in-depth assessment possible. If the team you hire has the certification with this reputable organization, you can bet they know their stuff.
Can They Provide Proof of Insurance and Workmans Comp?
The last thing you want as a homeowner is a fly-by-night company who doesn’t have any insurance. What if they mess it up, break something while on site, or worse – get injured and end up in the hospital. If they don’t provide workers compensation insurance for their employees and someone is injured on your property, they may sue you to seek reimbursement through your homeowner’s insurance! In short, make sure anyone you hire has current and valid general liability and workers compensation insurance to ensure you and your home have the proper protection.
Materials Apples to Oranges?
Another important factor to consider the method of repair is what materials are they use or recommend. For example, while relining a chimney with an uninsulated liner is less expensive, it is ONLY okay in a properly constructed and fully code-compliant chimney system. If sweeps notice issues through an inspection of your system, then an insulated liner and mitigation of creosote within the system should occur.
There are different types of materials liners are made from. They all vary and have different uses based on the condition of the chimney or its location. Estimates using improper or incomplete materials are less expensive, but in the end, it may give you more problems.
Is Your Chimney or Roof Hard To Access?
If your estimates still seem high, despite hiring a qualified technician, it could be because your chimney is hard to access. For example, a steeper roof may result in a higher quote, as the sweeps will face more risks while accessing your structure. The presence of solar panels around the chimney or fragile or delicate structures, landscaping, or cars below also increases the cost. In the case of a masonry system, you might want to consider the elaborateness of your brickwork, too. If it is in a unique pattern or if the bricks themselves are more expensive, your price tag will likely increase.
How Much Damage Are You Dealing With?
It may seem like an obvious factor, but the amount of damage you are facing has a lot to do with the final price. Many people fail to realize just how many things the sweeps inspect. When looking at masonry systems, most techs will look for cracks in the crown, spalling brickwork, crumbling mortar, rusted or broken down flashing, and the flue itself. They’ll also check whether or not your chimney cap and damper are in good condition. Finally, they’ll look at the firebox and determine if any damages are present.
In the case of piped systems, they will check for clearances of existing piping, damaged sections of piping, insulation against the system and the presence or lack of firestops. There are many factors that determine what needs repair or replacement in your system. While some parts of your chimney are quick and easy to repair, other parts need more than simple repairs. You should always invest in repairs sooner rather than later. Cracks, holes, and deterioration will only worsen with time, and you could face big issues if you don’t address them in a timely manner.
Give Us A Call!
Homeowners throughout Grand Junction and its surrounding areas trust the team at The Chimney Doctor for countless chimney repairs. We have been serving up happy customers with honesty, integrity, and passion. We can even provide proof of insurance upon request. Call today to book a preliminary appointment with our qualified team!