Chimney Types: The Best For Your Fireplace


The Best Type of Chimney For Your Fireplace

Although it often goes ignored, the chimney is a lifesaver. Without a properly working chimney you sure don’t want to start up your fireplace. The inner workings of your chimney protect your home from the potential dangers caused by fire and outdoor elements. If your chimney is not in good condition, a number of big problems can arise. While keeping up with your chimney is of utmost importance, so is installing the right chimney to begin with. Here we provide answers about the different types of chimneys, and how to pick the best chimney for your home.

Types of Chimneys: Masonry Vs. Factory Built Chimney

There are different types of chimneys out there. Some look completely different than others because of personalized aesthetics. Others appear different because they incorporate completely different chimney parts. For the sake of simplicity, there are 2 main types of chimneys: masonry chimneys and factory built chimneys. To know what type of chimney you need, check with the appliance manual for specifics. Chimney requirements are important and therefore should be easy to find for specific appliances. You never want to assume that a certain type of chimney will work for a certain appliance, if you don’t know for sure the results can be really bad. (Learn More)

What Is A Masonry Chimney?

When you think of a chimney, a masonry chimney is likely the first image that comes to mind. A masonry chimney is made with bricks, stone, or concrete brick, providing a very aesthetically pleasing appearance popularly used on homes. Masonry chimneys can provide a lot of durability and safety, so long as they are properly built and maintained. For instance, chimneys must include a fire clay flue lining and bricks that are at least 4 inches thick. For stone masonry chimneys, the stone must be at least 12 inches thick.

What Is A Factory Built Chimney?

Factory built chimneys are more economical in price but not as aesthetically pleasing as masonry chimneys. Also, you must beware that certain factory chimneys are only appropriate for certain fuel types. Factory built chimneys are crafted off site using metal and other materials, and can be installed as one pre-made unit. The most popular type of factory built chimney is a double-wall, mass-insulated chimney. This chimney includes 2 thick layers of metal, and lots of insulation. Other popular types of factory built chimneys include, air-cooled chimneys and air-insulated chimneys. (Read More)

Masonry Chimney Benefits

The majority of homeowners install masonry chimneys because of appearance and functionality. When properly put together, your masonry chimney will provide you with many benefits a factory built chimney will not.

-Brickwork can last for 100+ years! With proper maintenance your masonry chimney will prove to be a long lasting investment for your property.

-Masonry chimneys offer the opportunity to personalize. Allowing you to customize the outer appearance of your chimney to match your home and overall style.

-A Masonry chimney is installed brick by brick, or stone by stone. So when the time comes to do repairs on your masonry chimney you don’t have to take the whole thing apart. Instead, you can fix only what is broke or weak.

-Since masonry chimneys are built on the spot at your location, they are built to work with your exact needs, reducing the potential for preventable problems.

What Type of Mortar Is Best For A Masonry Chimney?

Masonry chimneys are formed and held together using one of many different types of mortar. You might assume choosing a great mortar is simple; after all you just want the strongest type of mortar available. Think again though, just because a mortar is incredibly strong doesn’t mean it’s right for your particular project. In most instances, you want your mortar to have some give to it. Otherwise, a lot of excess pressure can be burdened onto the bricks. A number of things should be taken into consideration before applying mortar to masonry work, consulting a professional is highly recommended.

Types of Mortar Include:

Type N Mortar
Type N mortar is medium in strength and considered for non-weight bearing projects, such as a wall in your garden, or a chimney! Type N mortar is a popular choice among homeowners because it is flexible and works well with soft stone masonry and most brick projects

Type S Mortar
Type S mortar is often used on outdoor projects that include stone masonry work. Best known for being super strong, type S mortar is great for foundations, retaining walls, and any structure that must bear a lot of impact.

Type M Mortar
Type M mortar is the strongest mortar you will find on the shelves of your local home improvement store. This load bearing mortar is often used for stone masonry because the two materials form together really well.

Glass Block Mortar
Glass block mortar is basically type S mortar that has been tinted a different color in order to match glass blocks as opposed to bricks. Instead of gray, glass block mortar is white and can also be tinted other colors to better match the materials being used.

Refractory Mortar
Refractory mortar is excellent at containing heat, which is why it is often chosen for fireplace chimney remodels. While this type of mortar generally costs more, it is often recommended for masonry exposed to heat on a continuous basis. This type of mortar is so resistant to heat and water because it contains calcium aluminate. ()

Proper chimney installation and maintenance are important in order to keep your home safe from the potential dangers of your fireplace. The professionals at Turnbull Masonry are here to help keep you and your family safe by providing professional chimney maintenance, repairs, installation, and so much more! (More Information)