What Is A Chimney Cricket, And Why Do You Need One On Your Roof?
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What Is A Chimney Cricket, And Why Do You Need One On Your Roof?
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What Is A Chimney Cricket, And Why Do You Need One On Your Roof?

Posted on February 18, 2023

Estimated Reading Time : 6 Min.

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What Is A Chimney Cricket, And Why Do You Need One On Your Roof?

As a homeowner, are you concerned about leaks from your chimney area? A chimney cricket can help you tackle this issue. A chimney cricket is a small, sloping roof structure that diverts water away from the chimney and prevents it from pooling on a roof.

In this blog post, we’ll explore what a chimney cricket is, how it works, and why you need one on your roof. Read our comprehensive guide to make educated decisions for your roof and protect it for years to come. 

What Is A Chimney Cricket?

A chimney cricket is a roofing structure designed to divert water away from the chimney on a sloped roof. It is typically a peaked structure that sits behind the chimney and directs water flow away from the chimney and down the roof. The cricket is made of various materials, such as metal, asphalt shingles, or wood. But the roofers prefer installing a cricket that matches the roof’s appearance and withstands the same weather conditions as the rest of the roofing material. 

A chimney cricket aims to prevent water damage to the roof and chimney. Without a cricket, water can pool behind the chimney and seep into the roof, causing leaks, rot, and structural damage over time. A cricket also helps to prevent debris and snow from accumulating behind the chimney. Additionally, a properly installed cricket can improve the energy efficiency of a home by preventing air leaks and reducing heat loss.

Why Do You Need A Chimney Cricket On Your Roof?

There are many problems that can arise by not installing a chimney cricket on your roof. Some of these problems are addressed below.

Problems That Can Arise Without A Chimney Cricket 

If your roof has a chimney and you don’t have a chimney cricket, you may be putting your roof and your home at risk. Without a cricket, water can pool behind the chimney, causing leaks and potentially leading to water damage and mold growth. Additionally, debris and snow can accumulate behind the chimney, leading to roof damage and other problems. Overall, installing a chimney cricket can help prevent these issues and extend the lifespan of your roof and chimney.

Types Of Roofs That Requires Chimney Crickets

While not every roof with a chimney needs a chimney cricket, many do. Generally, roofs with a high or steep pitch, as well as larger chimneys, are more likely to require a cricket. Additionally, roofs with chimneys located at the intersection of two roof planes or in a valley will often require a cricket to prevent water damage. It’s important to consult a roofing professional to determine if your roof and chimney require a cricket.

Advantages Of Installing A Chimney Cricket

As we now know, chimney crickets serve many purposes when installed on a sloped roof behind the back of a chimney, but now we will delve into the advantages of installing one. 

Prevent Water Damage

A cricket helps to divert water away from the chimney and prevent it from pooling behind it. This reduces the risk of water damage to the roof, chimney, and interior of a home.

Reduce The Risk Of Leaks

Water pooling behind the chimney can seep into the roof and cause leaks. By diverting water away from the chimney, a cricket reduces the risk of leaks and other water-related damage.

Improve Energy Efficiency 

A properly installed cricket can improve the energy efficiency of a home by reducing air leaks and preventing heat loss. This can lead to savings on the price of energy bills.

Extend The Lifespan Of The Chimney

By preventing water damage and reducing the risk of leaks, a cricket can help extend the lifespan of the roof and chimney. This will save homeowners money on repairs and replacements over time.

Enhancing Curb Appeal

A cricket can provide a finished look to a roofline and enhance the overall curb appeal of a home. This is especially important for homeowners who are planning to sell their homes in the future.

Chimney Cricket
Chimney Cricket

Difference Between Chimney Crickets And Flashing

While both roofing components serve the same purpose of directing water away from the chimney, they differ both in design and function. 

Chimney crickets, as we know, are most commonly installed on sloped roofs in an effort to prevent water infiltration inside the roof through the chimney. They protect the greater area around the chimney from water pooling and direct it to gutters. 

They also come in different sizes and styles. Despite the fact that roof flashing can also do the same job, chimney crickets are mostly preferred around chimneys. 

Roof flashing, on the other hand, is installed not only around the chimney but along all intersections on a roof. When chimneys or skylights are installed on a roof, they leave some gaps and holes open. In an effort to prevent water infiltration through these gaps, flashing with sealants is installed. 

Flashing is also a roofing component, like chimney crickets, that are made of different materials and styles depending on their usage. 

How To Know If You Need A Chimney Cricket

To determine if your roof and chimney require a chimney cricket, it is essential to look for signs of water damage caused by heavy rain, snow, or wind. Check for water stains on the ceiling or walls, mold growth, or cracked mortar joints. 

These signs can indicate that water is not draining away from the roof and chimney, and a chimney cricket may help solve the problem. If you notice any of these signs, it is best to have your roof and chimney inspected by a professional to assess the issue and determine if a chimney cricket is necessary.

How To Install A Chimney Cricket On A Roof

Installing a chimney cricket is a complex job, so it is difficult for homeowners to install them themselves. They require specific techniques and different measuring methods than flashing. Therefore, for chimney cricket installation, you need to hire a professional who is skilled at the job. 

The installation process involves:

Preparation

Before installing a chimney cricket, it is important to prepare the roof’s surface. This includes removing any old roofing material and debris around the chimney area. It is also essential to ensure that the roof’s surface is clean and dry before starting the installation process.

Measuring And Cutting

Once the preparation is complete, the next step is to measure and cut the cricket material to the correct size. This is typically done using a circular saw or other specific tools.  During the measurement, it is important to ensure that the cricket fits snugly against the chimney and the roof.

Fastening The Cricket

After measuring and cutting the cricket material, it is time to fasten it to the roof. Crickets can be fastened using screws or nails, which are driven through the cricket and into the roof deck.

Once the cricket is in place, you should seal around the edges with roofing cement or another appropriate material to prevent water from seeping underneath the cricket.

Applying Roofing Material 

After fastening the cricket to the roof, the roofers will apply a roofing material using a method and material that matches the rest of the roof’s structure, integrity, color, texture, and style. 

The roofing material secures the cricket in place and ensures it is waterproofed. 

Clean Up

Once a professional has installed the chimney cricket and made sure it is in place and secured, the area around it will need to be cleaned up. As dirt, grime, and debris may attach to the newly installed cricket, you’ll want to ensure it’s clean before the job is complete. 

Also, after the installation, you’ll need to maintain the cricket by regularly examining the roof and chimney for any potential signs of damage and promptly repair it if you think it will harm your roof.

The Cost To Install A Chimney Cricket

The chimney cricket installation cost depends on many factors, including the material cost, the installation or labor cost, and the complexity of the process. Because installation can be tricky depending on the location of the home and the size of the chimney cricket, the cost for installation will differ by household. 

Generally, the cost of installing a chimney cricket varies between $300 to $700. 

It is always recommended to obtain quotes from several roofing contractors in your area to determine an accurate cost based on your specific requirements. The best way to get a precise estimate is to contact a professional roofing company and request a quote for the installation.

Hire Professional Roofers For Your Roofing Project Today 

If you want to install a chimney cricket on your roof or have doubts about whether the one you have is working correctly or not, you should hire a professional roofer. If you live in Ohio, you can contact All Around Roofing, Siding & Gutters today at (937) 902-2839 for your roof inspection

Our Ohio-based company is home to professional and expert roofers who understand all the related complexities of roofing and treat your roof the right way. We have an expert team for all kinds of roofing projects, including roof installation, replacement, and repair.

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