Does Your Chimney Need a New Chase Cover?

If you’re somewhat familiar with chimney anatomy, then you know that all systems should be equipped with some type of crown to help direct water away from the sides of the masonry structure. But is this protection necessary for prefabricated units, too?

You bet. Except, rather than a concrete crown, prefab systems will be equipped with a reliable chase cover or chase top. Chase covers essentially offer the same type of protection as a concrete crown, only they are made from quality corrosion-resistant materials that are better suited for the makeup of a factory-built chimney.

Need your new chase cover installed? Call or book online with us today.

Design Your Custom Chimney Chase Cover With Us

Looking to create a custom chimney chase cover that meets the sizing requirements of your chimney perfectly? We can design one that not only accomplishes this, but meets your preferred design and style preferences, as well. Just click the button below and fill out the form. We can get you just what you’re in the market for.

Why Is a Chase Cover Important?

A chimney chase is an enclosure built around a prefabricated chimney vent pipe to protect the chimney flue and provide structural support. The chimney chase cover is a protective lid that shields the top of a chimney chase. The chase cover acts as a barrier that prevents water, animals, debris, and other objects from getting into your chimney chase and causing issues.

A damaged or missing chase cover can lead to damages, animal infestations, and an increased risk of chimney fires. Likewise, a chimney with a damaged or nonexistent chase cover is wide open to water exposure. When water enters a chimney, it leaves a path of destruction that can cause brick spalling and wood deterioration, as well as mold or rusting to other parts of your chimney system. Water is the leading cause of chimney damage, so safeguarding your system against it is a must.

New Chase Cover on a White Prefab Chimney - Beautiful blue sky in the background.

Is a Chase Cover the Same Thing as a Chimney Cap?

The terms “chase cover” and “chimney cap” are often used interchangeably. While they do function similarly, they are fundamentally different.

Both are important in protecting your chimney system from outside elements like water and animals, and both are typically made of some type of metal. That said, chase covers are installed at the top of the chimney chase acting as a type of metal crown, while a chimney cap is installed above this, covering that final opening of the chimney flue.

Another big difference? While every system needs a chimney cap, not all need a chase cover (as long as a concrete crown is already in place).

Are There Different Types of Chimney Chase Covers?

Chimney chase covers are made of different metals, so you have options based on your needs and budget. Some materials are more cost-effective in the short term, but don’t last very long. Keep this in mind when considering which chase cover is right for you.

  • Aluminum: One of the biggest benefits of an aluminum chimney chase cover is its longevity. It’s a light material that’s relatively economical and resistant to rust. While aluminum will not rust, it can corrode over time. If you live in an area that experiences a lot of rain and snow, aluminum may not be the best option for your chimney chase cover. Aluminum is also a softer metal, so it may be prone to denting, punctures, and other damage.
  • Stainless Steel: Stainless steel is one of the more common choices for chimney chase covers. It’s known for its durability and resistance to corrosion. For homeowners living in areas with harsh weather conditions, stainless could be a good option.
  • Galvanized Steel: If you’re looking for a less costly material for your chase cover, go with galvanized steel. Although it doesn’t last as long as stainless steel because it is vulnerable to rust, you can extend the lifespan of a galvanized steel chase cover by coating it with a layer of paint to protect against corrosion.
  • Copper: While stainless steel is the strongest material you can choose, copper is considered the most high-quality. Copper chase covers are durable, resistant to corrosion, and can last for decades with proper care. Copper is a popular choice for design-oriented homeowners because of its notable finish and how it ages over time.

How Can My Chase Cover Get Damaged?

There are a few big reasons your chase cover might be facing damage.

  • It isn’t made from reliable materials. The stock cover your system came with is likely built from sheet metal, which isn’t known for its reliability or longevity. These models can offer some short-term protection, but will eventually sag, dent, or collapse under the weight of snow, ice, and rain. Invest in a stainless steel or copper option before damage occurs and moisture gets easy access to your chimney and home.
  • It’s dented or too flat, inviting water to pool up. Like with the crowns on masonry setups, chase covers should be slightly slanted to ensure water is sent safely away and that it doesn’t pool on top of the cover and trigger rust. Dents or a too-flat surface can create spaces for water to settle and cause decay and corrosion.
  • It’s not installed correctly. If your chase top or cover wasn’t installed by a qualified chimney pro, there’s a good chance vulnerable spots are present which will cause both it and your chimney to suffer – and potentially your home, too. Invest in affordable and professional care now, so you don’t have to shell out the big bucks for repairs down the line.
  • Strong wind and/or animals have caused damage. Sometimes outside things interfere and cause damage. Strong winds can cause parts of the cover to lift, and animal tampering can lead to damaged areas too.

When it comes to your chase cover, even small damages can quickly cause big issues. It only takes one tiny opening for water to enter and start wreaking havoc. Ensure you’re set up right from the start by working with our crew through it all. Call or reach out online today.

How Long Should a Chase Cover Last?

The longevity of a chimney chase cover can vary based on the type of material it is, if it’s been properly maintained, and if it was installed correctly from the start. On average, a galvanized steel chase cover has a lifespan of five to 10 years because it tends to rust quickly. By comparison, a stainless steel or copper chase cover can last for up to 50 years. To get the most out of your chase cover, schedule annual chimney inspections. The Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) recommends yearly inspections for masonry and prefabricated chimneys.

A damaged chase cover will deteriorate more quickly than an intact one. If your chase cover is damaged or has endured significant wear and tear, then it likely needs some repair work or it needs to be replaced altogether. The most common cause of chase cover damage comes from corrosion and rust which can be easily identified during an inspection by a CSIA-certified chimney sweep.

Chase Cover - Before (with rusty chase and cap) and After (brand new stainless steel chase cover and cap) new installation - Chase Covers should be well maintained and certain types can last up to 50 years.

Not Sure What You Need? Schedule an Inspection

Because prefabricated units are known for being so affordable and convenient to install, many assume they don’t need inspections as often as the permanent masonry setups. Unfortunately, this thought process leads to lots of issues. The truth is that every chimney, no matter the type of system or fuel used, needs to be inspected annually by a Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) sweep.

If you have a prefab chimney and you’re worried that your chase cover (or any other part) needs some care, don’t hesitate to reach out and schedule an inspection with our qualified crew. We’re professional, polite, and efficient, and we’ll make sure your system is looking good and is ready to operate safely for your upcoming burn period.

Red brick masonry chimney with concrete chimney crown missing a protective chase cover - time to schedule an appointment - Before, During and After.

How Much Does a Chimney Chase Cover Cost?

The cost of a chimney chase cover ranges based on the construction material. Copper is usually the most expensive option among chimney chase covers with galvanized steel being the most affordable. However, copper is considerably more durable than galvanized steel, so you may save money on repairs or a chase cover replacement over time.

Can I save on expenses by installing the chase cover myself?

If you have experience in handiwork, you can reduce costs by installing a chase cover yourself. But… we don’t recommend chimney or roof work for first-timers. Working at great heights can be dangerous without proper safety equipment like harnesses and helmets. Don’t risk your health to save a few dollars when we can do the hard work for you.

Also, keep in mind that, if your chimney chase cover wasn’t installed correctly, it will not prevent water, animals, and debris from getting into your chimney. This means that a poor install can actually end up costing you a lot more in repair fees for a leaky chimney or a pesky pest removal.

Save yourself time and energy by calling Mid-Valley Chimney. Our team is ready and happy to help.

Don’t Wait for Water Damage To Cause Issues, Schedule an Appointment Now

Do you need a new chimney chase cover? Are you not sure whether or not your chase cover is in good condition? We’re the right team to get your chimney in prime condition so that you’re fully prepared for the burning season. Mid-Valley Chimney is a local, family-owned, full-service company with years of experience providing exceptional chimney work in Cincinnati and nearby cities.

Give us a call at 513-727-0994 or reach out to us online today. A member of our customer care team can get you scheduled for an inspection and one of our CSIA-certified technicians will get your chimney up and working in no time.

 

 

A custom chimney cap may be just the thing you need to protect your chimney from the intrusion of water, animals and falling debris, plus they look great. Our chimney services technicians are standing by to answer all your questions.