Waterproofing your chimney crown.

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Brick and stone chimney repair, Chimney/masonry waterproofing

Your chimney may have a crown that has cracks in it, yet still has a good bond to the brick it was poured upon.

CrownB4 Tamo
Cracked chimney crown to be repaired with Tamoseal.

A great way to remedy this problem, preserve the crown and protect it from future wear is to waterproof it with Tamoseal. Tamoseal is mixed with a mechanical mixer and is brushed on in two applications. The photo below is a of a crown that has been treated with Tamoseal:

CrownAFter Tamo
Chimney crown repair via application of Tamoseal!


TAMOSEAL is a cement based, polymer modified material designed to waterproof and decorate concrete and masonry.


Waterproofs and decorates Tenacious bond Becomes an integral part of substrate Durable Breathable Slightly flexible to seal static cracks


Concrete and block wall foundations Manholes Water tanks Reservoirs Balconies Interior/exterior

If you want to get technical about it, here is a link to the manufacturer's data:

Tamoseal technical data

We have used this product for over twenty years, and it works great!

Fireplace damper replacement.

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Brick and stone chimney repair, Chimney cleaning and inspections

Some quick data to think with regarding an inoperable damper. First, sometimes an inoperable damper can be made to work again with a little coaxing with a hammer and some WD-40 and some back-and-forth movement to work it free. I have had a high rate of success over the last 20 years with freeing up a damper that has been stuck open or closed due to lack of use. If a damper does need to be replaced, one can be mounted on top of the chimney. A top-mounted damper also acts as a rain cap that will keep water and animals out of your chimney. You can certainly appreciated the value of keeping animals out of your chimney if you have ever had one come in and decide to die in it. Wonderful odor in the house… This photo is of a top-closing damper. It is operated via a stainless steel cable that runs down the chimney flue and attaches to a bracket that is installed in the fireplace opening on a side wall.09507

Occasionally there will be repairs that need to occur at the top of the chimney in order to install this unit. We give free estimates for damper installations. (360) 754-3902.

Increased demand for chimney spark arrestors by our customers.

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Brick and stone chimney repair, Chimney cleaning and inspections, Home fire safety for you and your family

A spark arrestor is a tight-fitting metal chimney cap that reduces spark output into the environment. They are made of galvanized steel, stainless steel, copper, etc. This year I have received more requests than any of the previous 20 years for spark arrestors. The exact term used was "spark arrestor." This tells me that people are concerned more than ever about preventing wildfires.


A homeowner gets the additional benefit of keeping the inside of the chimney flue dry and keeping animals from nesting in the chimney. Another benefit is that the damper does not rust (spendy repair bill when I have to replace a damper…)  The list of dead animals I have pulled out of a chimney with no rain cap is birds, squirrels and a duck! Homeowners complained about the odor.  Even though I have a vested interest in selling the idea of purchasing a spark arrestor, it does make good sense and is a wise use of your money. Having completed that pitch, Happy Labor Day!

Flexible, stainless steel liners- a great innovation that needs to be maintained with care.

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Brick and stone chimney repair, Chimney re-lining (safety upgrades), Home fire safety for you and your family, Woodstove insert (into a fireplace) installation


In the ancient days we had to use ridged stainless steel pipe and very heavy-duty flex pipe to line a chimney. The liner would frequently get caught up in bends in the chimney system and cause us much grief. We install liners to make chimneys safe, and as mechanical code requires when installing to the exhaust ports of woodstoves and oil-fuel furnaces. Now we have light-weight stainless steel flex material that lines the entire run of the chimney and is much easier to install. One word of caution though: care needs to be taken when sweeping these liners. A chimney sweep can damage one of these liners if done improperly with the wrong equipment. The next blog will discuss this cleaning procedure, so  please watch for the posting…

Have a good day!

Rick Baker

Chimney expert

Precautions need to be taken when cleaning light-weight stainless steel liners.

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Brick and stone chimney repair, Chimney cleaning and inspections, Chimney re-lining (safety upgrades), Free-standing woodstove installation, Home fire safety for you and your family, Uncategorized

copperfield-poly-chimney-cleaning-rod-1 round-poly-brush





The above photos are of extremely flexible PVC rods and of a poly brush. This equipment is ideal for cleaning light-weight stainless steel all-flex liners. These rods and brushes navigate bends in flexible liners very easily. The rods and brushes in the photos below are very stiff, and can get caught up in a flex liner, and possibly rip the liner. They should not be used: 


Fiberglass-rods Metal-brushes-300x300