White stains often form on chimneys due to excessive moisture. When water has seeped into the masonry, a residue called efflorescence forms. This problem affects more than just the appearance of your chimney. It’s often a sign that the structural integrity of your chimney has been compromised.
What Is Efflorescence?
Efflorescence forms when soluble solutions penetrate bricks and other kinds of masonry, and evaporate on the chimney exterior, which leaves a salt deposit residue. You often see these white stains on the stone, brick or block masonry. It’s usually powdery or crystalline at first and becomes fluffy or fuzzy over time. In some cases, efflorescence can appear brown instead of white. It can also have a greenish color if minerals present on the surface contain magnesium.
However, efflorescence doesn’t always develop in masonry chimneys even if moisture has seeped inside them. There are certain conditions needed for the formation of efflorescence. For the deposits to form, there should be soluble salts, enough moisture in the masonry and enough salt to be able to travel through the masonry and evaporate on the chimney exterior.
Why You Don’t Want It on Your Masonry
You should address efflorescence on your chimney as soon as possible to prevent early deterioration. Failure to deal with this problem can cause your chimney to start leaning or even completely collapse. Moisture could penetrate the chimney and damage the flue lining, meaning you’ll need to buy a new liner. Your ceilings, walls, carpets and other furnishings can also suffer from moisture damage.
Whether you need a chimney sweep or repair expert, you can turn to Chimney Doctors. Call us at (518) 882-5009, or fill out our contact form to get a free estimate. We work with clients in Saratoga Springs, NY.