What’s Causing My Leaks & Water Stains?

Seeing a water stain develop in your ceiling or in the walls around your chimney is never cause for celebration. But hiring an experienced, certified chimney company means you’ll quickly get to the root cause of the issue, and have it repaired properly.

Coopertown Services has more than 35 years of experience repairing leaks, and we’re dedicated to removing chimney issues from our Shelby County neighbors’ lives quickly and correctly.

Water stains, very commonly, are due to issues with your chimney’s flashing. Flashing is installed at the point where the top section of your chimney meets your roofline, and since you have a joint there, it needs to be protected from water. Flashing is designed in a way that gives your chimney, your roof and your home multiple layers of protection, and when properly installed, it does just that.

Side by side comparison of a bad flashing job and a good flashing job

Chimney Flashing Design: Layers Of Protection

Chimney flashing is custom work, with layers of metal that are specially sized and installed for each individual chimney. Flashing needs to be custom-made so that it thoroughly protects your chimney, all the way around, without leaving any space for water to make its way through.

The Simplest Explanation Of Flashing Design:

Flashing consists of two types of flashing materials: step flashing, and counter flashing. Both are placed and layered to form a water-tight base around the chimney.

For the step flashing, L-shaped pieces are woven into the shingles and up against the chimney to provide a base layer of protection. Counter flashing is then installed into the chimney mortar joints, over the step flashing, to add a second layer of protection. High-quality urethane caulk is applied around the edges and corners to further bolster the flashing’s ability to block water.

Flashing is designed to provide a barrier against water, and with proper installation, it can effectively protect your chimney for years. But like anything else exposed to the elements, damage can occur: caulk can come loose; flashing pieces can tear or be torn off in storms; and materials can corrode and rust.

At Coopertown Services, we regularly repair and install custom flashing, and will be able to assess the damage to your flashing, and suggest the correct repairs. Whether you need new caulking or you need a complete flashing installation, we can help!

Flashing Materials: Some Are More Durable Than Others

Galvanized metal flashing tends to be the least expensive option, but since it is susceptible to rust and corrosion, it also tends to be the least durable. Although stainless steel and copper tend to cost more than galvanized steel, they are beautiful, longer-lasting options for chimney flashing, and you will see far fewer long-term problems. Ask your Coopertown Services technicians about your options — we can give you the facts and help you pick the right choice for your home.

If you need chimney flashing work, give Coopertown Services a call at 901-358-7777 or click here to schedule an appointment!


Another problem area that could contribute to a leaky chimney is what’s known as the chimney shoulders. An inspection by one of our trained staff will reveal whether you’re having any shoulder problems!