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  1. #1
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    Default creosote in attic

    How would creosote get into the attic other than a major chimney probelm? This was found on the framing directly next to the chimney penatration in the attic.

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  2. #2
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    Default Re: creosote in attic

    Quote Originally Posted by John Dirks Jr View Post
    How would creosote get into the attic other than a major chimney probelm? This was found on the framing directly next to the chimney penatration in the attic.
    John,

    Are you sure that's creosote? Hard to tell from the pics. If it is, I can think of no other way for it to get in the attic than the chimney. But, why no scorched or charred wood?

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  3. #3
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    Default Re: creosote in attic

    Gunnar,

    I picked it up and smelled it. It was the same smell as the sticky stuff that was at the top of the chimney.

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  4. #4
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    Default Re: creosote in attic

    John,

    I can't imagine where it might have come from, if not the chimney. Pretty scary.

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  5. #5
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    Default Re: creosote in attic

    I would suspect either a breach or hole in the chimney inside the attic or house or maybe the creosote is finding a way back into the attic through a roof vent. Was the substance you saw in th attic in close proximity to the chimney structure?

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  6. #6
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    Default Re: creosote in attic

    Could also be getting there from before the chimney - fire box, smoke shelf breach, even a from a breach or fire in the ash dump through the wall cavities or other bypasses, or perhaps some sort of fresh air intake breach. Might also be oozing/dripping in from the outside surface of the roof, down wind vent boot or at the roof/chimney junction or elsewhere.

    Deposited materials may have also been carried back into the attic via ventillation openings in same, such as gable, ridge or eave vents, turbine vents, exhaust fans or their ducting/venting and breaches in same or "whole house fans".

    May have been a fire already, not neccesarily in the firebox, not neccessarily reported, someone might have burnt a bunch of plastic or other inappropriate material in the firebox itself. One of the first pics looks like white paint over patching or some sort of parging with charred wood just below and underneath, with a slice of some sort of fiber or board material just below, but not really sure what's being photographed above the black specks.

    Whatever might be the source or cause - an investigation and inspection by a qualified specialist should be undertaken. Appears to be unlined. Some historical inquiry regarding property history, permits, modifications, neighborhood perils, fire department visits, insurance claims, news reports, might be further warranted.

    Last edited by H.G. Watson, Sr.; 02-12-2011 at 10:25 AM.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: creosote in attic

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Ostrowski View Post
    I would suspect either a breach or hole in the chimney inside the attic or house or maybe the creosote is finding a way back into the attic through a roof vent. Was the substance you saw in th attic in close proximity to the chimney structure?
    Yes, right on the framing that surrounds the chimney in the attic.


  8. #8
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    Default Re: creosote in attic

    Quote Originally Posted by John Dirks Jr View Post
    Yes, right on the framing that surrounds the chimney in the attic.
    Debris off the roof in the attic usually means recent work was done on the roof in that area, such as a flashing repair?

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  9. #9
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    Default Re: creosote in attic

    Quote Originally Posted by John Kogel
    Debris off the roof in the attic usually means recent work was done on the roof in that area, such as a flashing repair?
    I would be more likely to suspect the deposits if from above are from a LACK of recent repair or maintenance to flashing, roofing, etc. from the conditions photographed from the exterior, and that the photographed collections/deposits are making their way back into the attic, perhaps added in their entry/transport by the effects of Maryland's Winter winds, ice, snow, and thaw effects upon the structure.

    As mentioned previously, it also could be stack effect venting along the exterior of the chimney from a much lower breech or defect.

    Either way, an experienced professional needs to inspect and determine, cleaned, and remediated and/or corrected.

    Last edited by H.G. Watson, Sr.; 02-13-2011 at 12:11 PM.

  10. #10
    chuck altvater's Avatar
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    Default Re: creosote in attic

    Hard to tell from the pictures, but often around masonry chimneys small bits of roofing work their way under the flashing over time and land on the insulation and rafters near the chimney. In my area we have quite a few chimneys that have never been used despite being 20+years old (it stays pretty warm in Savannah, GA) and I see this all the time when doing chimney inspections.

    The little balls look like tiny bits of creosote, but if you get a look up into where the flashing is around the chimney where it penetrates the roof, you may see that's where the tiny bits are coming from.

    When there's a breach in the chimney you'll see evidence of it on the chimney itself in the form of staining or creosote stuck to the chimney.


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