Tilting Chimney

Foundation Issues: Tilting, Leaning Chimneys Near Richmond, Lexington, Georgetown

A home with a previous chimney problem.

As most houses are built, the chimney's foundation is added to the home's foundation (some are poured at the same time). A full masonry chimney can weigh tens of thousands of pounds.

If your chimney's foundation (or the soils underneath that foundation) are unable to support the weight of the chimney, it will begin to tilt. A helical pier system can repair this damage.

The Problem:

Your chimney or smokestack is tilting and separating from your home.

Telltale Signs:

  • Gaps between the chimney and home walls that have been filled in with mortar, foam, or caulk.
  • Damage to the roof where flashing meets the chimney
  • Leaning or tilting of the chimney
  • Cracks where the chimney foundation meets the home foundation

How to Fix It:

At The Basement Doctor of Central Kentucky, we repair tilting chimneys with the Foundation Supportworks Helical Pier System.

This system is very successful when it is mounted directly onto the chimney's footer and may even lift the chimney back to its original position. 

The problems that cause your chimney to lean and show signs of failure can apply equally to more serious foundation problems.  Make sure to pay attention to not only the chimney but also to other structural problems that may be occurring.

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Repairing Tilting Chimney Problems

One of the most overwhelming and striking signs of foundation settlement is a chimney separating away from the rest of the home.  Contacting a professional foundation contractor is essential so that they can assess the damage and identify the cause and extent of the problem.  We recommend not only checking the chimney, but also the rest of the house because this is often a sign of other serious structural problems.

A Word Of Warning: filling in the void between your house and chimney is not the answer! Many homeowners will have the void filled with masonry, foam, caulk, or some other material. This is a temporary fix only -- and it'll have to be removed when the real repair is done.

A tilting chimney in Mc Kee showing serious foundation damage.
a repaired chimney in Mc Kee that had shown serious foundation damage and was repaired with a helical pier system.

(Top) A chimney is tilting away from the home foundation by about 1".

(Bottom) The chimney repaired with a helical pier system, used in conjunction with a push pier foundation repair on the main house foundation.

Why Do Chimneys Lean?

When chimneys have a missing or inadequate chimney footing they often fail.  This could be the result of improper design and a lack of structural support.  Over time chimneys experience tilting problems due to poor supporting soils that they are built on.

If the soils supporting your chimney are not sufficient to hold its weight, the chimney may begin to sink, causing it to separate from the rest of the home and tilt outward. 

Other structural problems may be occurring if the soils underneath your home are unable to support your chimney.  Make sure you get this addressed as soon as possible so that conditions don't get worse.

More about Foundation Soil Issues.

Installing Helical Piers For Chimney Repair

To repair a tilting chimney, we at The Basement Doctor of Central Kentucky recommend stabilizing it with a helical pier system.

This type of foundation pier system includes helical blades that allow the piers to be driven (or "screwed") deep into the ground to stronger supporting soils.

A bracket is attached to the helical pier and mounted on the footing of your chimney's foundation after the pier is driven into the ground.  Once installed, the helical pier can even be used to attempt to return your chimney to its original position.

More about Foundation Helical Piers.

We Do Tilting Chimney Repair In Kentucky!

At The Basement Doctor of Central Kentucky, we specialize in foundation repairs of all kinds -- including those related to tilting, leaning chimneys. Our solution will quickly and permanently solve your foundation issue.

We provide free, written foundation repair estimates to homeowners throughout our service area. Each estimate is made in person, on-site, and comes with no obligation to you.

Our service area includes Lexington, Richmond, Georgetown, and nearby areas such as Danville, Frankfort, Nicholasville, Berea, Middlesboro, Somerset, Shelbyville, in Kentucky. Call or e-mail us today to schedule your appointment!

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our service area

We serve the following areas

  • Allen
  • Auxier
  • Banner
  • Beaver
  • Betsy Layne
  • Bevinsville
  • Blue River
  • Boons Camp
  • Burdine
  • Bypro
  • Dana
  • Drift
  • Dwale
  • East Point
  • Eastern
  • Flatgap
  • Grethel
  • Hagerhill
  • Harold
  • Hi Hat
  • Isonville
  • Ivel
  • Jenkins
  • Keaton
  • Lackey
  • Langley
  • Martin
  • Mc Dowell
  • Meally
  • Melvin
  • Minnie
  • Oil Springs
  • Paintsville
  • Prestonsburg
  • Printer
  • River
  • Sitka
  • Staffordsville
  • Stambaugh
  • Stanville
  • Teaberry
  • Thelma
  • Tram
  • Tutor Key
  • Van Lear
  • Weeksbury
  • West Van Lear
  • Wheelwright
  • Williamsport
  • Wittensville
Our Locations:

The Basement Doctor of Central Kentucky
22 Reilly Rd
Frankfort, KY 40601