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Question DetailsAsked on 12/17/2016

we already checked with building dept. we can lower chimney 10ft.. what would you charge to lower bricks from

chimney to roof ,then from roof to ground 4 stories down . then from ground to dumpster

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2 Answers


Sorry - on the previous question I got so wrapped up in the code compliance part I forgot you asked about ballpark cost. Be sure to get bids from several chimney contractors because costs for this sort of thing vary a lot. I would NOT use a demolition contractor (who would likely be quickest and cheapest for the removal part) because of the need to avoid secondary damage to the chimney, and the need to rehab the top to final waterproof and capped form.

]And be sure scope includes final inspecting and removing any debris that drops down the flue(s) as part of the job - in fact, requiring a chimney sweeping for all flues as a final measure (as part of the work) to remove any loose creosote or such which broke loose and fell down there (which can be a chimney fire hazard) would be a good idea unless it has been recently swept.

Most contractors would not do it like you describe - would use a demolition disposal chute from about 8-9 feet up the chimney above roof level direct to his truck or trailer or dumpster for this size job - debris goes straight down chute to disposal receptacle, which also reduces the risk of injury to anyone or windows or such from falling bricks breaking on impact.

As I recall, you previously said 5x6 foot chimney (presuming a 4 flue chimney), removing 10 feet of existing 18 foot stickup. Given that this is going to need a disposal chute and retaining form or heavy tarping around the chimney during removal to prevent roof damage or bystander injury from falling bricks (assuming the chimney is still in use so can't use the chimney itself as the disposal chute as one commonly would in total demolition), and not knowing exactly how the chimney is built so will likely need a diamond or carbide saw cutoff of the liner, I would say this is a 2 man job for at least half to a full day plus about 2-4 hours to top finish the liner, rebuild the crown, and reinstall the cap (or put on a new one) - so I would estimate it at probably about 12 crew hours (might take as little as half that if deteriorated grout and no concrete).

So, I would estimate about $900-1200 labor in all but highest labor cost areas where it might run as high as $1800, about $200 materials, and say about $250 disposal fee except in a few urban areas where they charge through the nose for weight in which case could be a high as $1000 or so disposal. Plus additional say $300-400 to sweep 4 chimneys presumably averaging 2 stories in height - so say $1350 -1650 range except could be as high as $2250-3000 range in a select few highest cost areas, plus the $300-400 for the sweeping (assuming 4 flues) if needed. (Though if sweeping is not needed because they were recently swept, the contractor should definitely still check and clean out the dust and any debris trapped at the flue dampers so the smokebox is clear and clean).

If it is by some chance a structural concrete chimney inside with just a brick facade, then cost could go up another $500-1000 from the above estimates - but except in California and Seattle area those are pretty rare for chimneys under 4-5 stories unless less than about 20-30 years old.

I know the above costs sound high - partly because of the high stickup off the roof and need to protect the public below, partly because the top needs to be rebuilt for use not just demolished, and partly because this sort of job has a nasty habit of taking longer than expected - like if you hit a lot of rebar or some bright soul used closely spaced #12 rebar (1-1/2") instead of #3 or #4 (3/8 or 1/2") as I ran into once on a larger chimney like this. Even ran into one once with 1/2" thick wall cast iron pipe used as the flues - THAT takes a lot of cutting effort and time plus the delay and cost of bringing gas cutting gear because it is way too much to cut with a cutoff saw lying on its side. That sort of thing pops up a fair amount in pre-1960's homes where flues were made of whatever cheap material they could find - and scrap pipe was easy to come by before the days of serious small-quantity steel recycling.

You may well get bids half what I stated (and maybe half again as much also) - but FIRST choose bidding contractors based on reputation and reviews, THEN secondly on price - because chimneys full of bricks and cracked liners, damaged roof, and brick dust and chips on the siding and sidewalk or drive from sloppy handling of the debris; or a leaking chumney because it is not rebuilt correctly at the top, is not going to help you any.

Oh - be sure roof washing (sweeping will not remove the white dusting from the grout/mortar) and ground cleanup to remove dust and debris is included in the scope, as well as specify protection of the structure and the grounds from damage is specified. (Likely will need to authorize truck or dumpster parking near to chimney which will leave wheel tracks on grass - be careful if have to drive across sidewalk because heavy trucks or dumpster handling trucks can readily crack and tilt sidewalk slabs.

Oh - BTW - my recommendation - I recommend a good heavy duty domed or low-angle peaked (not flat) galvanized steel crown pan (or chase pan as some call it) rather than a mortar crown - as long as it it domed or peaked so it cannot retain water should last longer and be more leak-free than a grout/mortar crown - especially if you require it be painted with a rust-resistant paint like the proper Rustoleum cold galvanizing paint. Should be the type (or field fabricated) with built-in drip edge to divert the runof away from the brick to minimize deterioration.

Note on the cumpster - if you meant to an apartment or condo dumpster - most "residential service" dumpster contracts prohibit soil materials, concrete, or brick or such in the dumpster - too heavy for the garbage trucks that pick it up and dump it. You usually have to have the contractor bring a truck, or rent a roll-off dumpster (watch the weight limits) - whjich works better anyway because hopefully it can be placed close tot he chimney to receive the end of the disposal chute.

Answered 3 years ago by LCD


Note to readers - start of question is here -

ediego - FYI, for future reference, you can keep all the parts of a question and answer together in one 'thread" or question by using the Answer This Question yellow button below your question to answer back or add additional info or photos or whatever you want.

Answered 3 years ago by LCD

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