Total Coverage Chimney Caps
Chimney caps are an essential part of not just your chimney, but your house. A good chimney cap (total coverage chimney cap) should not just cover the flue opening, but cover the entire mortar crown and if possible the first course of brick or stone.
Top ten reasons for a total coverage chimney cap ...
1. Eliminates the most moisture penetration of the flue.
2. Eliminates damper deterioration. Rust.
3. Flue integrity. No cracks due to moisture entering the flue.
4. Eliminates firebox moisture damage. Cracks in the back wall are reduced.
5. Mortar crown covered from heat exposure and moisture.
6. First course of brick/stone is covered.
7. Helps protects the mortar joints from mold growth on the exterior of the chimney.
8. Better animal guard because animals cannot sit on top of the mortar crown to gain access.
9. Better bird guard because birds cannot roost on chimney top.
10. Better appearance!
Flue caps that only cover the flue are better than no cap at all, but they only act as a bird and small animal guard. If a raccoon wants to enter a chimney with a flue cap, it's going to either tear off the flue cap or dig into the mortar crown. Chad with Masters Services says "Raccoons live, breed, and die in chimneys. The proper chimney cap keeps out any animal invaders and any water damage causing large money repairs."