Metro-East STL Tuck-Pointing and Repointing Service
Brick and mortar buildings, homes and walls are beautiful structures. The traditional look of brick and mortar is something that has never gone out of style. Although these are some of the most well-built structures around, they can begin to show their age through cracking and crumbling mortar joints.
Signs of deterioration can be worrisome, but if the problem is taken care of before major damage begins to occur, the structure can be saved and restored to its near original condition. You can get this process started by contacting a masonry professional to evaluate your structure. If the deterioration or damage is not too bad, they may recommend restoring it through what is normally referred to as “tuckpointing and repointing”.
What is tuckpointing and repointing? Tuckpointing and repointing are two terms that you often hear together and are sometimes used interchangeably for adding or restoring the mortar joints of a brick structure. They do both involve adding new mortar joints to a brick structure, but they are actually two different processes.
Tuckpointing is a process in which the masonry professional uses two different colors of mortar to fill in mortar joints of brickwork. One color is the same color as the brick, while the other is the color of the existing mortar. The existing mortar color is sandwiched between the two layers of the brick color mortar. This gives the mortar a very nice neat, thin-lined look. This process was invented in England in the late eighteenth century and was used to give the same appearance as more expensive rubbed brick. Today tuckpointing is often used in conjunction with repointing even though originally it was a separate and different process.
Repointing is the process of repairing mortar joints that are damaged, cracked or crumbled by filling in the joints with new mortar that is mixed by a masonry professional to match the existing mortar. Not only do they match the color, but the strength of the mortar must be matched. If the new mortar is weaker or even stronger, it can cause an imbalance in the structure and lead to more damage down the road.
If mortar joint issues are left alone, they will continue to worsen and eventually major structural repair or even a rebuild may be required. The following are some signs that your mortar may need repaired:
The mortar has eroded more than 6mm.
Gaps or cracks between the brick and the mortar.
If you see any of these signs in your brick structure you may want to have a masonry professional take a look at the problem to see if it is serious. A sign that the damage may be too serious would be that if the bricks are coming loose or are badly damaged. Repointing may be a solution that can repair the damage and stop it from going forward. Tuckpointing and repointing are very labor-intensive jobs, so this is definitely something that you want to hire a masonry professional to do.