No homeowner wants anyone or anything coming down their chimney this autumn or winter, Saint Nick excluded of course. Despite this, there is still thousands of chimney pots left uncovered across the UK.
With autumn firmly upon us and winter creeping round the corner, now is the time when chimneys begin attracting unwanted attention from rain and snow, with birds, insects and rodents following closely behind looking for shelter.
Chimney pot covers, such a cappers, chimney birdguards and chimney cowls, are easy to install, low cost solutions to this annual problem.
While some homeowners take their chances with exposed chimney pots and/or dislike the appearance of chimney covers, the pros certainly outweigh the cons when it comes to chimney pot caps.
If makes complete sense to cover your chimney with a chimney cowl or birdguard this year, especially if you have recently encountered an issue with your chimney, stove or fireplace.
In this blog we explain just why chimneys need protecting and how chimney covers work. We'll also share with you some of best chimney pot covers on the market right now.
Why You Need Chimney Covers
Although all chimney systems are manufactured to deal with the flow of incoming rainwater, years of water penetration can eventually become a problem.
Constant exposure to rain, snow and wind can cause bricks and mortar to deteriorate over time. Cracks can form and cause damage to the structure of the chimney, as water runs down the brickwork and into walls and ceilings.
Rainwater is not the only danger to uncovered chimneys. While we humans can run a bath, sip on a hot chocolate or grab an extra duvet when we feel a bit chilly, our animal friends are not so lucky. To keep warm, wild animals often make their way onto our roofs and into our chimneys, attracted by the warmth emanating from below.
These are often birds and squirrels, but can also include racoons and even snakes if you live in Australia. Not even Dr Dolittle would consider these welcome lodgers. What's worse, once in the chimney wild animals can struggle to get out and can even die, leading to odours and flies that can be difficult (and expensive) to remove. Having a chimney cover in place can prevent this from ever happening.
One of the other main draws of chimney pot covers is their resistance to downdraughts. Downdraughts can cause properties to fill with smoke as cold blasts of air push smoke back down the flue. This problem is naturally more common in windy areas.
Chimney caps with vents can stop these blasts of cold air entering the chimney, while not hindering the chimney's primary function of providing an exit route for the toxic by-products of combustion.
Finally, having metal meshing on your chimney cover can also help prevent fires, as the chances of hot embers escaping the flue and landing on the roof are reduced.
How Do Chimney Pots Covers Protect Chimneys?
Chimney pot covers protect chimneys, and therefore homes, by helping to eradicate all of the problems listed above.
The chimney cap at the top of the covering is what protects the chimney from rain water and falling debris, such as leaves and twigs. It is this capping that also stops downdraughts whooshing down the flue.
To stop birds and other wild animals infiltrating a chimney, birdcages, chimney cowls and chimney cappers can come fitted with a heavy duty mesh that is incredible difficult to penetrate.
At the same time as keeping animals and debris out, the spaces between the meshing is still wide enough to not to interfere with draft. The same applies to chimney pot caps which should be at least 5 inches above the top of the any flue tiles it is covering. Having more clearance than 5 inches is a good idea.
Fixing covers onto chimney pots is a straightforward DIY job. Most chimney cowls come with straps that are easily and tightly fixed to the chimney, while low cost wire mesh is even easier to fit. Very few tools are needed at all, although you will obviously have to think about roof access and safety.
For homeowners worried about how a chimney cover might alter the existing look of their property, good quality terracotta chimney caps come in a stainless-steel design that will last infinitely. Other colours are available, including black and buff.
When decding on chimney pot covers, not only do you need to consider what your chimney needs protecting from, you'll also need to bear in mind what kind of fire is below, solid or gas. If your chimney is redudant, as many across the country now are, our chimney cappers are the ideal economical solution.
What Chimney Pot Covers Are There?
We have a wide selection of chimney products available at Roofinglines from specialist manfacturers. These include low budget fixes to keep out the birds and multi purpose solutions to prevent rain and downdraughts. Our prices are the best on the market, guaranteed by the Roofinglines price match promise.
Colt Cowls High Top Birdguard - Solid Fuel - Buff
Reduces the potential for clogging by soots or debris
Brewer Round Birdguard - Gas Fuel - Terracotta Painted
Designed to prevent birds and debris from entering your chimney
Brewer Round Chimney Capper - Strap Fixing - Terracotta Painted
Easy to fit traditional raincap design
Brewer Bonnet Cowl Chimney Cowl - Buff Painted
Minimises rain entry into your flue. For redundant chimneys only
Colt Cowls Colt Top 2 All Purpose - Strap Fixing - Terracotta
Low cost anti-downdraught chimney cowl
Colt Cowls Rotorvent Ultralite 2
Top quality revolving anti downdraught cowl and ventilator