Homeowner’s insurance is in place to protect your home against unexpected damages and can make a huge, positive difference should disaster strike. Where chimney damage is concerned, this insurance typically covers certain types of problems while leaving the resolution of other types of problems up to the homeowner.
Fluesbrothers Chimney & Fireplace of Kansas City, KS, does a lot of chimney repair work that’s covered by homeowner’s insurance as well as projects the owner pays for. While it’s always best to check with your insurance rep to get the details, here are some damages that are usually covered by a good homeowner’s policy.
Covered Chimney Damages
“Unexpected” damage to a chimney includes damage resulting from:
- Heavy hail storms
- Major wind storms
- Falling trees and branches
- Lightning strikes
- Some chimney fires
You likely will have no trouble securing payment from your insurance provider for these situations.
Chimney Damage Homeowner’s Policies Probably Won’t Cover
On the other hand, there is “expected” damage, which often is caused by neglect on the part of the homeowner. When regular chimney cleaning, chimney inspections and timely repairs aren’t seen to, chimneys can fall into many types of disrepair such as:
- A chimney that leans to one side
- Total or partial chimney collapse
- Cracked chimney liner
- Deteriorated bricks and mortar
- System-wide water leaks
- Damage to the chimney crown, chimney cap and chimney flashing
- Interior flue damage due to excess buildup of acidic creosote
- Potentially major chimney fires
Insurance adjusters are on the lookout for chimney damage caused by neglect, and they’ve seen enough of it to spot it easily. Homeowner’s insurance companies expect homeowners to take reasonable steps to keep their chimneys (and fireplaces and stoves) in a safe condition.
How to Avoid Chimney Damage Due to Neglect
Our chimney technicians work throughout the Kansas City, KS/Kansas City, MO regions to help homeowners stay on top of necessary chimney maintenance. The three best things you can do for your chimney are:
1. Annual chimney sweeping
Chimney cleaning performed once a year by CSIA-certified chimney sweeps will remove flammable creosote from your flue and drastically reduce the chances of a serious chimney fire. Our chimney sweeps also remove drafting obstructions such as outside debris that can cause smoke and deadly carbon monoxide to back up into your home.
2. Annual chimney inspections
Fluesbrothers provides chimney inspections from basic to advanced to spot early signs of damage or malfunction so you can have problems resolved before they get out of control.
3. Schedule chimney repairs when needed
If you always have chimney repair work done when issues arise, you’ll keep your chimney system working safely and performing as it should all year long.
Do You Need a Second Opinion on Chimney Repairs?
We regularly provide homeowners with second opinions for repair work, whether it’s going through a homeowner’s insurance policy or self-pay. A qualified second opinion can alert you to inconsistencies with your original estimate and may save you a lot of money. At the very least, it will put your project into perspective.
Get a second opinion or learn more about Fluesbrothers’ chimney sweep, chimney inspection and chimney repair services by speaking with a chimney and fireplace expert at (913) 236-7141.