Chimney Options

As you will discover in this article, there are good and bad factors associated with the chimney. We wanted to address some of the things that you should know about chimneys so you have a clean, safe, and efficient stove or fireplace for heating your home.

Good Chimney Choices

Masonry Chimney

The two types of chimneys approved for wood burning appliances include the masonry chimney and the 650 degree factory built chimney. First, the masonry chimney is a conventional option, which is made from a clay tile liner, which is enveloped by block, brick, or stone. Built specific to building codes, most masonry chimneys are installed by professional masons. Now, sometimes, a homeowner will do the installation but in this case, it is imperative that codes are understood and followed.

If newer materials are used in the building of a masonry chimney, opposed to the older type of materials, you will find the chimney works much better. Additionally, we recommend going with round flue tiles rather than rectangular or square tiles. The reason is that round flue tiles fit better, which means moisture and smoke do not leak. You also want to make sure a masonry chimney has the right type of rain cap, which will keep rain from getting inside the flue.

650-Degree Factory Built Chimney

The second choice is the 650-degree factory built chimney, which is perfect for wood burning stoves, furnaces, and fireplaces. In this case, the chimney can accommodate continuous gas temperatures of 650 degrees while providing the ultimate in performance. First developed in the early part of the 1980s, the 650-degree factory built chimney offers excellent insulation and a liner that is more corrosion resistant.

Bad Chimney Choices

Type A

Just as there are good chimneys, some should be avoided at all costs. First, the Type A chimney is metal and was a common choice prior to 1983. Unfortunately, these chimneys do not meet current code and in fact, they are not capable of withstanding high temperatures. Bracket masonry chimneys should also be avoided or replaced. These chimneys rest on brick or wood supports in the wall of a house instead of being supported on a solid concrete foundation. As you can imagine, these chimneys present serious hazards.

Other Choices

Then, an unlined masonry chimney could work but it must have a clay tile, firebrick, or stainless steel liner. An air-cooled chimney is also a bad choice. While these might work for the use of airflow, they do not have solid insulation going between the inside and outside layers. Thus, the outer surface remains cool, which affects the efficiency of the chimney and wood burning appliance.