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Category: Masonry Services

Where Should You Look To find and Exterior Masonry Expert?

Where? find experts in masonry

Masonry structures are used inside the house as well as on the exterior of the building and in the landscape. If you need construction or repair services for exterior masonry surfaces, you should be looking for a contractor who specializes exactly in the type of projects that you have. Here is where you should look for an exterior masonry expert:

  • Online – most masonry contractors have websites that you should check. Just enter a search query into your browser, then your search results one by one to find the right specialists;
  • Word of mouth – ask your friends, family and coworkers whether they have previously hired a contractor for an exterior masonry project and ask about their experiences with the contractor they have worked with;
  • Local newspapers – many masonry contractors continue to use printed advertising, so you might find their ads in local papers.

Whatever contractor you are looking for, exterior masonry experts included, it is a good idea to collect at least three or four names that seem suitable, then to contact them for a personal meeting and to request written cost estimates from each candidate – a step of special importance in the case of large projects. Evaluate the contractors on your list based on your personal impressions as well as on the quality and the contents of the estimates. Start with http://www.nemasonry.com.

An Explanation of Tuck-Pointing

masonry process restoration tuck pointing

Tuck-pointing is a process that serves functional as well as ornamental roles. The method involved is used for refreshing the appearance of old and worn brick and mortar walls, for making cement walls look as if they were traditional brick and mortar walls as well as for restoring the strength of old brick walls by replacing the old, crumbling mortar in the joints. Here is what the masonry restoration Connecticut process involves:

  • Removing the old mortar – if used for repairing an old wall or for refreshing its looks, the process starts with the removal of the old mortar that joins the bricks and the creation of grooves of uniform depth;
  • Filling with red mortar – the next step is the application of brick-colored mortar in place of the old mortar;
  • Creating grooves – while the red mortar is still soft, thin grooves are created to make space for the white mortar;
  • Adding white mortar – the white mortar is added into the grooves to restore the traditional red and white appearance of the wall.

If the process is used for giving a cement wall an appearance that resembles traditional, brick and mortar walls, the process of tuck-pointing is essentially the same, with the difference that the wall will need to be painted into the desired shade of red or terracotta.

What Is Masonry Restoration?

Masonry restoration is the term used for any type of work performed on already existing masonry structures. The purpose of masonry restoration is to restore the appearance and the functionality of the masonry structure – here are some of the most common procedures involved:

  • Tuck-pointing – masonry structures being made from brick or stone, they are very strong, their weakest point being the mortar, the material used for joining the pieces of the construction. Tuck-pointing is the process of removing the old, crumbling mortar and replacing it with new mortar to enhance both the look and the functionality of the structure;
  • Repairing gaps and cracks – another very common type of masonry restoration task is the filling of any gaps, cracks and chips that affect masonry structures. The mason handling the task will make sure that the color and the texture of the repaired part matches the rest of the structure, so the process is informed by operational as well as by aesthetic considerations;
  • The application of sealants – there are many products available for improving the water-resistance of Connecticut masonry structures, all of them easy to apply and very strong. Many sealants will also enhance the appearance of the masonry structure that they are applied on.

How Often Should Brick Be Repointed?

repointing masonry restoration red brick

Repointing refers to the process of removing the deteriorated mortar from the brick structure and replacing it with new mortar. When it is done properly, repointing can restore the beauty and functionality of a masonry structure.

If the repointing job is done the right way, it can last for quite a long time, namely somewhere between 50 and 100 years.

In case the repointing was done poorly, this does not only affect the overall appearance of the masonry part, but also can damage the well-being of the entire building. So the question would be whether you found the right people for the job, and how to fix things in due time, before the brick structure can get more deteriorated and therefore harder to repair.

Good repointing workmanship can add more value to your home or commercial building, while also preserving the life of mortar joints, wall and historic elements of a building.

Nowadays, the usual lifespan of a mortar layer is that of 20 to 30 years. There is a method to help you determine whether you need to repoint a masonry structure. Thus, with a help of knife, you can try to scrape out some mortar pieces. If this can be done easily, then repointing becomes mandatory. Or simply call the professionals New England Masonry and Restoration to do the inspection and repointing.

What Is Involved In DIY Masonry Restoration

industrial Construction bricklayer worker building walls with bricks, mortar and putty knife

DIY masonry restoration is possible, but it is always best to consult with an expert, to provide you with all the necessary guidance, tips and techniques of this type of work before engaging in any project.

First and foremost, there are certain essential tools that you may want to acquire in order to do this type of job. You will need things like: matching bricks, a chisel, hammer, mortar mix, sponge, masonry trowel, a tuck pointer, buckets and scrap containers –for water and mortar, and nitrile gloves.

Then you can start removing the old mortar with help of a chisel and a hammer. You should break it in small pieces, while also being cautious not to damage the old bricks in any way. After that, it is time to mix the mortar.

The next step is to put the bricks on top of each other without the mortar, to make sure the structure is spaced correctly. Then you remove them and can start the actual work by applying a small amount of mortar.

The idea is to make a correct estimation of the quantity of mortar which you apply between the brick layers. Too much mortar can stain the bricks, whereas too little will not hold the bricks together.