Still, when I could suppress the awareness of what the work was going to cost, I, too, could rejoice this morning at 9:30 when the truck drove up and John the chimney technician rang the bell. Hurray, the sweep's here!
He certainly earned his money. He was here for five hours, and made sure everything was done just right.
First thing, he went down the basement, put the water heater on pilot, removed the 3" flue between the appliance and the chimney, and enlarged the opening into the brickwork.
|Old cap unit, on the ground|
|Note the rust on the lefthand side!|
|Flue full of bird's nests|
John got out his rods and brushes and pushed the birds' nest material down into the basement where he plucked it out of the opening. Two 5-gallon buckets worth, and some of it was packed so hard, he said, that for awhile he thought I had a brick stuck in there.
|At work with the rods|
|New liner, with 2 buckets of blockage|
|A new cap. Pardon rotation fail.|
|The liner is in|
The animals needed more brushing and were enjoying it so much I missed the actual insertion of the liner into the flue. He said there was no trouble getting it down. Which is funny in a grim sort of way, because another chimney company came out in mid-June and got cold feet about "what they might find" in my chimney. They were afraid they couldn't get the liner through, refused even to bid the job and told me to get an electric water heater instead!
|Connecting the liner at the WH|
|Setting the caps|
|Time for sealant|
He noticed a bit of light-colored something on the stone and tried to scrape it off. I'd noticed it, too, and when he came down he said it was sealant left from the old cap that had covered the whole top dressing. He went back up with some solvent and soon, it was gone.
|Done up top; time to lower the ladder|
|New connector mudded in|
|This will need watching|
But I'll think about that next summer. Right now, the work is done, hurray! and the damp spot over my mantelpiece can start drying. It might take a week, John said, but then I can finish prepping my living room walls for finish.
John hauled the old cap unit away, so I can't have a wake over it. I was toying with taking it in for scrap myself, but I don't think I could lift it, nor did it look like I could fit it into my car, even with the back seat folded down. So it's just as well I forgot to mention it and he made the decision for me.
Now, terra cotta chimney pots. That'd be just the thing. Oh, yeah.