Chimney Pots FAQ
Q: How do I select a chimney pot that will function properly?
A: When selecting a chimney pot it is important to consider the top opening in relation to the fireplace opening, and the base dimensions in relation to the flue they are covering. This ratio to the top opening is often 1/15 to 1/20. The base inside dimension and the base outside dimension should be nearly as large or larger than the largest dimension of the flue they are being installed on. The base of the chimney pot should not impinge on the effective flue area of the flue by more than 3/4 of an inch. Many other factors such as fireplace chimney construction and house air pressure can affect proper chimney operation. Superior Clay’s chimney pot brochure and website have a color-coded chart to help you size your chimney properly.
Q: Can I use a smaller chimney pot if my fireplace is fitted with gas logs?
A: No. The use of gas logs does not change the formula for building a fireplace. The same effective flue area must be maintained as a wood-burning fireplace.
Q: How do I install the chimney pot?
A: Chimney pots are set in a bed of mortar on the masonry chimney cap. The base of the chimney pot need not match the dimensions of the flue liner it is being installed on top of, but should not impinge on the inside area of the flue liner except for the maximum 3/4 of an inch at the corners. The flue liner may extend up inside the chimney top, or the flue liner may be flush with the top surface of the chimney cap. Additional anchoring may be used to prevent damage from tornadoes, hurricanes or earthquakes. A 1/4 to 1/2 inch diameter hole may be drilled in at least two opposite sides of the pot and a bar used to anchor the top into the grout or the chimney walls. When installing on wood chase chimneys, special attention should be given to preventing water leakage around the base of the chimney pot.
Q: Can chimney pots be installed on outdoor fireplaces?
A: Yes, but you should be aware that clay chimney pots may be susceptible to thermal shock when installed on fireplaces or appliances with a short chimney stack of less than four (4) standard length flue liners due to the close proximity to the heat source.
Q: What material is used to make a rain guard?
A: The rain guards are made from clay, the same material as the chimney pots.
Q: Are rain guards available for all Superior Clay chimney pots?
A: Superior Clay has rain guards to fit most of our chimney pots. Care should be taken when putting a rain guard on some of the very small pots.
Q: Can I purchase a rain guard for my flue liner?
A: Superior Clay can make a rain guard to fit most square, rectangle and round flue liners.
Q: Are the chimney pots available in different colors or textures?
A: In addition to the natural terra cotta any of Superior Clay’s chimney pots and rain guards can be ordered in any of six standard glazes; choose from black, buff, limestone, sandstone, dark red or salt glaze (brown). We can also develop custom glazes, finishes and textures to meet your needs. Gallery.
Q: Does Superior Clay make custom chimney pots?
A: In addition to over 60 standard chimney pots Superior Clay offers custom-made designs. Whether you want to make a minor modification to an existing chimney pot or have us bring your own design to life, if it can be done, our artisans can do it. Contact Superior Clay for questions on custom work.
Q: What are the name changes for several of the chimney pot styles?
A: The chart below describes the new names for the different clay pot styles. The style and the dimensions of the pots did not change; only the names changed Old Description/ New Description Style A King Arthur Style B Belmont Style C Classic Style D Devonshire Style E Edwardian Jumbo E Large Edwardian Style F Excalibur 13 X 18 Style F 13 X 18 Excalibur
Q: Will adding a chimney pot to my chimney help the draw?
A: Properly sized Superior Clay pots will not only add beauty to your home, but will add height to your chimney that may increase draft.
Q: Can animal screens and spark arrestors be added to the chimney pots?
A: Wire mesh can be added to the top of the chimney pot as long as it meets code. The code says: where a spark arrestor is installed on a masonry chimney, the spark arrestor shall meet all of the following requirements: The net free area of the arrestor shall not be less than four times the net free area of the outlet of the chimney flue it serves. The arrestor screen shall have heat and corrosion resistance equivalent of 19- gage galvanized steel or 24-gage stainless steel. Openings shall not permit the passage of spheres having a diameter greater than 1/2 inch (12.7 mm) nor block the passage of spheres having a diameter less than 3/8 inch (9.5 mm). The spark arrestor shall be accessible for cleaning and the screen or chimney cap shall be removable to allow for cleaning of the chimney flue. Check with your local authorities concerning these requirements before installing a screen or spark arrestor.
Q: Can I install two chimney pots over one flue liner?
A: Installing two pots over one opening is not recommended as this will cause turbulence and affect the efficiency of the chimney. It is important not to impinge on the effective flue area of the liner.
Q: If installing more than one top on a house do they need to be the same style?
A: Mixing and matching different styles can add architectural interest to your home. It is really up to the individual’s own sense of design and personal preference.
Q: Is special care needed to maintain the chimney pot?
A: Chimney pots require very little maintenance as they are fired at high temperatures enabling them to withstand the elements. An annual inspection is recommended.