Mid-Valley Chimney Repair & Sweep LLC Helps Indian Hill Homeowners Combat the Freeze/Thaw Process

It’s dark and cold outside – the perfect weather to curl up with a blanket in front of the fireplace or stove in your Indian Hill home. You peel yourself out of the chair to light a fire, when you notice a strange smell is coming from the firebox. You think, “Well, that’s strange, but probably nothing…” and light it up anyway. 

Then, smoke billows back into your face and disperses throughout the room. Definitely not nothing. Something is wrong with your system and now you have to call in the professionals. No fire for you tonight.

If you live in Indian Hill, South Clippinger, Madeira, Allandale, Country Club Acres, Kenwood Hills, Gravelotte, Kenwood, East Madisonville, Marewood Acres, Terrace Park, Holiday Acres, or anywhere else in our service area, you know how cold our winters can get. Protect your chimney from the freeze/thaw process and other damages by working with us!

What Is the Freeze/Thaw Process?

The freeze/thaw process goes something like this: Your porous bricks soak in moisture. Temps drop below freezing. The water and moisture inside the bricks freezes and expands. Your bricks experience a lot of pressure and crack. Temps rise. The ice melts and more water enters into the newly formed gaps and crevices. Temps drop below freezing again. And thus the cycle continues…

Needless to say, this is something to avoid, but safeguarding your chimney from water isn’t so easy since it’s located outside of the home. …or is it?

How Can Mid-Valley Chimney Help?

So, how do our trained and certified experts help homeowners throughout Montgomery County combat the vicious freeze/thaw cycle? Here’s what we can do:

  1. Administer necessary repairs. First things first, we’ll need to do an inspection, then address any damage the freeze/thaw process has already caused. This likely means replacing damaged (or missing) bricks, performing tuckpointing services, and possibly rebuilding your chimney crown.
  2. Install replacement parts, as needed. If your brickwork is suffering, there’s a good chance your chimney cap, flashing, or maybe even your damper needs some care, too. We can repair or replace any chimney components that are showing signs of damage or decay.
  3. Apply waterproofing products. In terms of preventing the freeze/thaw process from recurring down the line, waterproofing is a must. These products are what will prevent your bricks from absorbing any more moisture, while also allowing any pre-absorbed water to eventually escape.

Ready to invest in care from the chimney crew that’s trusted on Indian Hill Road, Miami Road, Drake Road, Shawnee Run Road, Kugler Mill Road, Shawnee Run Road, Galbraith Road, Blome Road, Loveland Madeira Road, Hopewell Road, Graves oad, Sugarun Lane, Brill Road, Brillwood Lane, Cunningham Road, Camargo Road, Given Road, Buckingham Road, Whitegate Lane, Spooky Hollow Road, Pipewell Lane, and countless roads in between? Give our experts a call today.

We’re the Team to Depend On for Chimney & Fireplace Services

Our full service list covers just about everything! Turn to us for:

  • Chimney Inspections
  • Chimney Sweeping
  • Chimney Repairs
  • Masonry Repairs
  • Chimney Rebuilds
  • Chimney Relining
  • Chimney Leak Repair
  • Custom Chimney Caps
  • Chase Covers
  • Crown Rebuilds
  • Waterproofing
  • Fireplace Facelifts
  • Stoves & Fireplace Products
  • Dryer Vent Cleanings

What Is Tuckpointing?

So, we’ve covered the freeze/thaw process – and why you want to avoid it. But what can be done if damages have already occurred? Well, tuckpointing may be one service that’s soon in order.

Tuckpointing is a structural and cosmetic method of mortar repair in which damaged and cracked mortar is removed and replaced with new mortar that’s similar in color and composition. When it’s done correctly, your chimney will be reinforced structurally and the masonry will look smoother and more aesthetically pleasing.

How do I know if I need tuckpointing?

Tuckpointing may be needed every 20 to 30 years depending on upkeep and climate (depending on how humid and rainy it is outside, you might have to do tuckpointing more often).

During your annual chimney inspection, one of our Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA)-certified sweeps will carefully assess the condition of your brickwork. If there is evidence that the brick and mortar is suffering wear and tear, tuckpointing may be recommended. These are signs the technician will look for:

  • There are visible cracks in the mortar joints
  • Holes or gaps in the mortar
  • Loose and crumbling brick
  • Mortar that is fading or discolored
  • Water stains, which could be a sign that water is infiltrating the brick
Brick Chimney

How Does Tuckpointing Work?

Tuckpointing is a multi-step process:

  1. Inspection: Assess the chimney’s structure to identify damaged mortar joints.
  2. Remove old mortar: Damaged mortar is removed with specialized tools.
  3. Clean out the mortar joints: Once all of the old mortar is out, the mortar joints are cleaned with the appropriate tools to get rid of as much old mortar and dirt as possible.
  4. Apply new mortar: We’ll mix the new mortar to match the color and texture of the current mortar. Then, we’ll apply it so that it appears smooth and seamless.

How Much Does Tuckpointing Cost?

Like most home improvement work, it’s difficult to give a concrete cost of a project before a thorough inspection. The rate for a tuckpointing project can vary based on how many mortar joints need to be replaced, the location of the damage (if the repair work is mostly ground level, it’ll be cheaper than repairs that are higher up the chimney), and the overall condition of the brickwork. In the end, a well-maintained property will have fewer costs.

All that said, we don’t like to give out any definite costs until after we’ve met with the homeowner and assessed the situation.

What About DIY Tuckpointing?

Tuckpointing is a process that requires skill and expertise. While we understand the appeal of taking matters into your own hands, we do advise against tuckpointing yourself if you don’t have prior experience.


  • If tuckpointing isn’t done correctly, it can lead to more significant damage which will directly impact your budget.
  • The new tuckpointing material may not match in color and composition.
  • A sloppy or incorrectly done job leads to poor-looking results, which hurts value and curb appeal.
  • If the right materials are not used, you’ll still face damage, making any invested work and expense void.

When Is It Too Late for Tuckpointing?

Tuckpointing should be considered when you first start noticing cracks and other cosmetic issues. If you get to a point where bricks are loose and beginning to fall, you may have an entirely different problem that requires more intensive intervention – like brick replacement services or an entire rebuild.

Call us to schedule an inspection, and our technician will suggest the best course of action.

Your Safety Is Our Biggest Concern

No matter what type of damage or issue you’re facing, we’re determined to help. We can keep your home in Glenwood, Milford, Raiders Run, Plainville, Avoca Park, Mason, West Chester, Montgomery, or anywhere else in the surrounding towns and cities safer and more comfortable with every passing year.

Would you like an estimate? No problem. Simply reach out online or call us at 513-727-0994 today.


If you need dryer vent cleaning and live in Loveland, you’re in luck because we travel frequently to that part of our service area.