We don’t often go about inspecting our walls, chimneys, and houses in general so we never know when masonry repair is needed. Sometimes it’s necessary and at times we think it’s not. But just because a house or building is standing tall that doesn’t mean it’s in tip-top condition. We usually wait until the damage is severe or noticeable before we take action. Below are the three signs that indicate if a structure needs masonry work done to restore its past glory.
Another name for this is bowed brick. It is characterized by a brick that is either bent inward or outward. So why does this happen? It’s mostly due to the moisture that managed to get behind the brick. Moisture will have one of two effects. It’ll either warp the concrete and the brick, causing them to bulge out, or they can soften the wood or plaster behind them, causing them to cave inwards.
Masonry repair will deal with the problem by removing the problem bricks and fixing the underlying issues. The mason will remove the ones damaged by the moisture and then reconstruct the wall with new bricks.
Masonry Repair Tips for Vertical Cracks
Vertical cracks aren’t something to panic about, but they’re not something to neglect either. Cracks that are vertical, or within 30 degrees of the vertical, are generally safe and aren’t an indication that a wall is about to collapse. So why do we care about fixing them?
A vertical crack will let water and moisture into the wall behind it. This can lead to bulging or caving bricks like discussed above or it will ultimately damage the inner wall itself. Masons often have two ways of fixing these cracks.
The first and simplest method of fixing a vertical crack is by filling it with an epoxy or urethane injection. The second is to inject it then install an expansion joint to wholly carry the weight if it’s a corner crack. Both techniques are cheap and easy to perform, so there’s no reason to not fix a vertical crack before it turns into a more serious problem.
Compacted bricks are really easy to spot. They’re just bricks that lost their shape and look strange. The reason we worry about a compacted brick is because it’ll lead to more compacted bricks, sort of like the domino effect. This happens because a compacted brick won’t do its job of weight-bearing. Therefore, all the surrounding bricks will have to carry more weight and handle more stress.
If left uncorrected, one compacted brick will eventually lead to five damaged ones and before you know it, you’ll have dozens of damaged bricks on your hands. In order to deal with the issue and prevent further damage, you should call in a mason. The mason will then replace the damaged bricks with new ones then suggest that you make sure that your foundation is underpinned by push piers for additional support.
Masonry repair is usually simple and uncomplicated. The important thing is to catch a warning sign early and fix it before the damage expands.