Exploring Chimney Maintenance Costs

Chimneys often suffer from water ingress and require specialist maintenance due to their exposed location. This page is for anyone who is looking for a price to maintain, repair or remove a chimney.

On this page we will cover:

  • chimney cowls, their uses and how much they cost
  • a price guide for chimney pointing
  • replacing leadwork and how much it costs
  • chimney sweeping costs
  • a look at removing a chimney and how much tradespeople are charging for this

Cowls

Cowls are primarily used for two purposes:

  1. stop rainwater and birds from entering the stack
  2. to help increase the updraft so smoke from a fireplace is pulled up the stack

There are dozens of different types of cowls but the best option is to usually fit a universal product that is suitable for different fuels and even disused chimneys that need ventilation.

We recommend the Colt Top cowl which is the industry leader in manufacturing these products.

Purchase cost: £50 (see product details here)

Installation cost: £75-£100 (excluding scaffold costs, which may be needed, it depends on the height of the chimney)

Chimney Sweeping

If you have an active fireplace then cleaning the chimney via a sweep is a task that should be done once per year.

Recent research by Quotation Check suggests that the average price for a chimney sweep is around £50.00.

A good place to find a sweeper is by visiting the National Association of Chimney Sweeps.

Chimney Pointing Cost

Chimney pointing is the process of removing failed and loose cement from between the bricks on a chimney and “pointing in” new cement.

This process has several benefits:

  • prevents water soaking into the bricks
  • helps to secure leadwork to the wall
  • improves the visual appeal of the chimney
  • prevents bricks from coming loose

How much this will cost doesn’t just depend on how long the work takes or even how difficult the work is, but is affected by how much scaffold (if any) that is required.

A chimney that is located in the centre of a roof 20 metres high will require a considerable amount of scaffold. A smaller chimney located at the roof edge and only 6 metres high could probably be reached via an access tower that most roofer’s own.

With that in mind, it’s impossible for us to give you a price to point a chimney without knowing more details such as it’s height and location.

The three examples below exclude scaffold costs but are what a roofing company would otherwise charge to repoint a chimney:

  1. Small chimney 2m high by 0.75m wide – £400.00
  2. Medium sized chimney 3m high by 1m wide – £750.00
  3. Larger chimney 4m+ by 1.75m wide – £950.00

The prices above also include a new cement flaunching to the top of the chimney.

Chimney Removal

A chimney stack is the part that extrudes from the house, usually via the roof.

The breast is the part of the chimney that is inside the property.

This section relates to chimney stacks only.

Dismantling and removing a chimney stack is an option and is often done when:

  • the chimney is at risk of collapse
  • the fireplace has been closed off and the chimney is no longer needed
  • any extension is planned and the chimney needs to be removed

As with repointing, small chimneys can often be reached by access tower but anything larger will need to be professionally scaffolded.

There are also additional costs to consider; waste disposal fees for medium and larger chimneys will be in the region of £200-400 as bricks and mortar are so heavy and waste is charged per tonne.

Also, the roof will need to be repaired after the chimney has been removed, so new rafters, batons, felt and tiles will be required.

We assume that the stack will be removed to below the height of the roof tiles but the chimneys breast inside the house will be left intact.

To remove a chimney, from the top and all the way to the ground floor would involve a considerable amount of work, including scaffold, flooring and replastering work.

Below is our price guide for stack removal, but again, this excludes scaffold fees.

Small chimney – £750.00

Medium sized chimney – £1000-1300

Larger chimney – £1500+

Leadwork

The base of the chimney stack where it intersects with the tiles is a weak spot that’s prone to leaking.

To protect this area, lead flashing is secured to the chimney and “dressed” over the tiles.

There are several reasons why leadwork may fail and need replacing or repairing:

  • splits are common on thin long lengths of lead
  • movement or “settling” of the roof due to the heavy weight of the tiles
  • incorrect or poor initial workmanship

The cost of replacement lead is determined by these factors:

  • scaffold costs, as stated earlier in this article
  • the purchase price of the lead fluctuates
  • the width and thickness of the lead

The following prices are a guide only and exclude scaffold costs:

Small to medium sized chimney – £600-800

Large chimney – £900-1000

Scaffold Costs

As you can see from our price guides on this page, scaffolding is often required for chimney repair, removal and maintenance work.

Visit this page to see how much scaffold costs to hire.

How Much Do Tradespeople Earn?

We have done extensive research into how much tradespeople earn in wages and day rates.

Explore our guide below, it’s both informative and insightful:

See Tradesperson's Day Rates

Get Your Own Quote – Online

We hope you have found our guideline prices helpful.

To source your own quotes click the link below to see how we can help you:

Get a Quote Online