Regular maintenance of the house is the key to keeping the homes occupants safe as well as avoiding costly home repairs due to neglect. One area of the home that may not receive a lot of attention is the chimney, however, if not properly maintained, a chimney could become a major safety hazard or even collapse.
There are many reasons a chimney could become structurally damaged. Earthquakes are a big reason, also over time wind or extremes of weather could make it deteriorate or even large objects like scaffolding or trees etc. could fall against it. A chimney that is in danger of collapse wont necessarily just be an exterior problem, but it can also fall in on itself creating the potential for major damage and risk of injury. So, what are some things you can check to make sure the chimney is in good repair?
Take a look at the entire chimney and observe any signs that it is starting to come away from the rest of the home. Does it look like it is leaning or listing? Try scraping the mortar with a screwdriver and see if it is starting to crumble. Look at what kind of condition the footings are in.
There are other parts of the chimney which are not as easy to check to see what condition they are in. If the chimney in your home looks like it might be starting to deteriorate or if the home sustains any damage from an earthquake etc. it would be a good idea to have it inspected to make sure it does not pose a danger to anyone in or around the property.