Chimney Cap Installation for Wildlife Prevention for Macomb County, MI
Bats in the Chimney
Chimneys come in all shapes and sizes, but nevertheless wildlife will find it. Bats, birds, raccoon's, and squirrels will all end up in your fireplaces. This can be avoided with a simple installation of a chimney cap. The video shows a chimney filled with bats, because the chimney cap has a gap in it. The colony of bats gained access right through the top of the chimney.
This is for a gas furnace so the so the lining is ran right through the inside of the chimney stack. If the proper chimney cap is not installed it will leave all the areas around the lining open for bats and other critters to get in. Keep in mind, just capping the chimney without the installation of the one way door would have trapped the bats in the chimney. Once the bats are in you have to get them out, but if the chimney was capped properly the bats would not have made it in. Sometimes more is needed than just capping the chimney to keep bats out. Most chimney cap sizes are not small enough to keep bats out. They will keep other nuisance wildlife out like raccoon's, birds, and squirrels, but not bats. Installing a 1/2" hardware cloth underneath the cap will help to keep bats from penetrating. Do Not just install hardware cloth with no cap, because it could pile up with leaves or snow and keep it from properly ventilating.
Chimney Capping Will Save More Than the Life of Your Chimney
Animals often get trapped inside of your chimney or fireplace. Ducks, owls, squirrels, hawks, and baby raccoon's often fall through the top of your chimney because there is no cap. These animals can not get out like bats, chimney swifts, and adult raccoon's. A dead animal is a very hard animal to get rid of. Some dead animals fall to your fireplace or into your clean out, but sometimes they get caught on a ledge inside of your chimney. Sometimes chimney sweeping the flue can get rid of the dead critter, but this ins't always the case. Most times the animal will just decay in your chimney causing an awful odor. So don't wait until there is a dead animal, get the chimney capped to prevent the wildlife from entering.
What if My Chimney is Already Capped?
If your chimney already has a cap on it then you are on the right start. If you are having a problem with nuisance wildlife, then it's still a good idea to have it inspected during your initial home inspection. We can check to make sure the cap is properly installed, is not broken, and there are no potential entry points around it. Sometimes home owners with bat problems will get bats in the chimney or fireplace even when the chimney is capped. Proper sealing or screening can prevent the bats from entering around the chimney. The image to the right shows how we had to screen around one of the openings on the chimney cap to keep the bats out. The top of the chimney cap is fine, but around the middle of the chimney cap there was an opening where the bats were slipping through. We too some 1/2" hardware cloth and sealed it with some windows and siding silicone.
Chimney Sweeping and Cleaning
If you have problem wildlife in your chimney or fireplace you will probably want your chimney flue cleaned and sanitized. We carry chimney sweeping rods on all of our trucks to help get rid of wildlife and clean them out. We can run sweeping rod up and down the flue of your chimney to clean out all the unwanted waste and materials. After all of the urine and feces are out of the chimney we will vacuum them up with a hepa filtered shop vacuum. We can spray a disinfectant in the chimney to kill off any odors or foreign bacteria and fungi.
Proper Installation of Chimney Caps
Choosing the right size is the first thing to do. Standard flue sizes come in 9" x 9", 13" x 9", and 13" x 13". Most chimney caps will come in a galvanized metal and stainless steal metal. We recommend installing a stainless steal cap to prevent rusting. Galvanized caps will work fine though. With birds, raccoon's, and squirrels just installing the cap will work fine. With bats it is recommended to install 1/2" hardware cloth underneath the cap to keep the bats out. Do not use anything smaller than a 1/2" hardware cloth, because it can get filled with soot and build up ice during the winter. This will cause house fires and gases backing up into the home. Double flue chimneys may require a special type of chimney cap. These are not always carried on our trucks and may need to special ordered.
Chimney Swifts- A Real Nuisance
So we've talked about squirrels, raccoon's, and bats living in the chimney and fireplace now we have to talk about chimney swifts. Loud screeching noises come bellowing through your home from the fireplace. This is most likely chimney swifts. Chimney swifts are a type of black bird that lives in Michigan. There really isn't a lot you can do right away to get rid of a nest of chimney swifts. Most chimney swifts make their nest somewhere in the middle of the chimney making it impossible to get to without damaging the nest and killing the birds. We typically wait for the young to be raised and then return to the home to clean out the chimney and cap it. If the birds are adults and still live in your chimney we can install a one-way door on your chimney stack to get rid of them. Then once the birds are out we can install the proper cap to keep them from returning.
Chimney Cap Services- Macomb County, MI
We offer wildlife removal from chimneys, chimney cap installation, and chimney screening for the following Macomb County, MI cities: Armada, Center Line, Chesterfield, Clinton Township, Eastpointe, Mount Clemons, New Baltimore, New Haven, Richmond, Romeo, Saint Clair Shores, Shelby Township, Sterling Heights, Utica, Warren, Washington Township