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When to Call a Professional for Masonry Repair

When is the right time to call a masonry repair professional? Mainly, if there are signs of mortar erosion, stones beginning to chip, or bricks moving out of place. Masonry is a difficult field of repair because of the time and attention to detail required to complete a job correctly. If you have no masonry training or have no stoneworking experience, it’s important to hire a professional so no further damage is caused. You don’t want to pay more money for a botched repair. Catching the early signs of deteriorating stonework can save you from experiencing more problems (structural and financial) down the road. Whether you need to call a professional for chimney repairs or brick replacement, here are some main masonry issues you want to be on the lookout for.

Deteriorating Mortar

Mortar is the sealant-like paste that is used to fill the gaps between the individual bricks of a structure. It’s similar to concrete in a way because they are both wet during application and dry as they set. Mortar connects bricks together despite their textural imperfections and helps distribute the weight of each brick evenly across their surface area. However, mortar is made of sand, concrete or lime, and water: this means mortar will deteriorate over time for a few different reasons. Rain, wind, friction, and time will gradually wear down mortar over the years, signaling that you should think about masonry repair. Thankfully, a professional mason can use techniques such as repointing and tuckpointing to replace degraded mortar while restoring it to its original state.

Bulging And Shifting Bricks

Brick and stonework can be susceptible to bulging, warping, and shifting over time. Alternating temperatures — especially in the midwest and northern climates — and weather conditions shrink and expand masonry, allowing mortar deterioration and shifting stones to occur. Moisture can seep into cracks in the stonework, freezing and thawing with the changing cycle of weather. Also known as “frost boil”, this shrinking and expanding can cause bulging, shifting, and displaced bricks. It’s important to call a mason if you see any early signs of shifting, bulging, or fallen bricks. Infrastructure damage, foundation problems, and further masonry problems can occur if this problem is left unchecked.

Cracking and Chipping Stone

Probably the most obvious sign that your home requires masonry repair is when your brick and stonework have structural damage — cracks, chips, and chunks missing. Even though stone and brick are strong building materials, they’re not wholly invincible. Strong, sudden impacts and gradual weathering can cause this cracking and chipping to occur. Like a crack in a windshield, if untreated, the imperfections in the bricks can grow, causing more structural damage; letting this kind of problem go untreated will compound further problems down the line. Here are some bonus masonry resources for when you should know when to call a professional.

If you need to hire a stoneworking professional for masonry repair or just want a free estimate, contact the home restoration experts, Brickworks Property Restoration, at 586-868-3234 today.

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