CF VICE Construction

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Masonry Repair Vs. Masonry Restoration: What’s The Difference?

Whether you live in a brick home or not, you’re likely to have masonry work done somewhere in your house, including your patio, chimney, or kitchen. Many homeowners prefer using bricks and stone for their unique aesthetic and durable strength. Despite the strong nature of these building materials, the masonry doesn’t remain perfect after construction forever.

While some homeowners try to DIY masonry work, it’s always wise to call masonry service providers for the best results. This is because you might miss some important corners or construction theories that work better for your repair project.

Also, masonry is not everyone’s forte. Each brick or stone’s equal stone placement is a testament to a mason’s practice and perfection in their craft. So, hiring the right people will put your mind at ease so that your stonework or brickwork can be fixed to its original form.

So, if you’re curious about what masonry repairs and masonry restoration is, here’s our brief guide to help you understand what goes into each process:

brick and stone work on a staircase leading upwards

Everything You Need To Know About Masonry Repair

Here’s everything you need to know about the masonry repair process:

Masonry is prone to cracking and chipping due to wear and tear by external elements and time. So, repairs become necessary to bring it back to its original form.

Exposing The Joints By Removing Crumbling Mortar

The first step in most masonry repairs is tuck-pointing. This process uses an angled grinder to loosen up the crumbling mortar. After that, a hammering drill is used to knock out the remaining mortar in the joint. Then your mason will clean out the joint with water. When the joint is cleaned out, your mason will begin to apply new mortar to fill the joint space.

Tuck-pointing in masonry is also often referred to as brick pointing or repointing. It’s used to repair the joints between the bricks, as we mentioned. It’s also a great way to give your building a facelift. However, more than an aesthetic improvement, this process also ensures that the building remains strong and durable. It also helps in reducing moisture as the cracks get sealed and repaired. This is often done for chimneys and walls to prevent moisture damage from rain, humidity, and snow.

This process becomes necessary after 18-32 years as this is typically the longest mortar can last. A seasoned mason will be able to tell you when you need this procedure through regular inspection.

 a stone wall made with asymmetrical stone blocks in various colors

Placing The Mortar

Once your joint is cleaned and prepped, your mason will use a trowel to lift the mortar paste and work it between the joints. And if required, your mason may use a jointer to round up the edges of the mortar. After drying, they will brush down the bricks to give them a clean finish.

However, in the case the bricks themselves are cracked, your mason will have to find similar bricks to match the existing ones. They’ve got to be a match in size and color, so they fit in with the other bricks.

Repairing The Damaged Bricks

To remove a cracked brick, your mason will hammer the brick and then chisel it out with a power tool. This will help the brick break down, making it easier to be removed piece by piece. Your mason will probably do this tandem while removing the mortar. However, they’ll have to be careful, so they don’t damage the surrounding bricks.

Placing A New Brick

After the broken brick space is cleared, it’s time for the new brick to slide into place. So, your mason will place the mortar surrounding the brick and fix it into place. Once the brick is in place with mortar, they will brush it and smoothen it out after the mortar is dry.

a wall made up of red bricks with a white mortar to hold the bricks together

Everything You Need To Know About Masonry Restoration

Here is everything you should know about masonry restoration:

Masonry restoration refers to working on any old masonry building structure. It involves everything from tearing down the whole structure to fixing it, rebuilding it, and sealing it after cleaning. So, what exactly classifies a masonry building? It’s a masonry building where the roof and floors are held up by masonry, like bricks and stones. However, these buildings are also known as CMU or concrete block buildings. And most often, these buildings don’t exceed two structures.

Masonry restoration is often a long process. It takes a lot of time and effort because it requires skilled masons. They need to be aware of when the building was built and use materials specific to the era when the building was constructed.

church-historicalan old church with exquisite masonry and architectural work using bricks, stones, and statues

So to begin, the mason will begin chipping away at the wall or damaged masonry and be careful not to harm the surrounding work. They’ll apply fresh mortar to prevent further damage. Meanwhile, your contractor will begin to source materials that match the original construction tools, like the specific brick shape, texture, and color. However, some materials may be hard to find as they might become less popular. That’s why this process is so meticulous and takes time.

This procedure is also expensive because of the material sourcing and technical skill required to use those materials effectively. However, once the process is done, the building looks fresh and new, making the effort worth it.

The Differences Between The Two Processes

Masonry repair and masonry restoration’s main difference is the scope of the project. Masonry repair is often used for newer properties that have been constructed in the past 20-30 years. While restoration refers to old monuments and buildings that have been there for more than 50 years.

Masonry restorations are used to bring authenticity to the building. They require the mason to match the mortar on the existing bricks. And use raw materials that we more accurate to the time the structure was built. This can be incredibly difficult for bricks, as finding the right match can be almost impossible. So, masons or contractors would’ve got to get approval on the best brick that’s closest to the color, size, and texture of the original bricks.

an old monastery taken over by natural vegetation

So a mason would have to go collect bricks from architectural heritage sites in New York and Chicago where similar buildings exist. If they cannot find matching bricks, they can repurpose the bricks from the back of the building, or a non-visible portion, to restore the exposed brickwork. Another option is to find the closest match that’s professionally manufactured and install those.

Masons also have to be careful about replacing headers and limestone sills on doorways and windows. They’ll often fortify these headers using steel lintels to stay up-to-date with modern construction standards.

The Case Of Old Properties

You must’ve seen old properties in the USA. One of their striking features is the gargoyles and beautiful granite columns on the property. These cases might also require an architectural specialist to work together with skilled masons to replicate the details and craftsmanship of these objects.

The Case Of Modern Properties

These properties may require touch up in the chimneys of the patio due to the exposure to rain and other weather elements. It can cause a moisture leak that, if left unchecked, would be catastrophic to the home structure. So, masonry repair can be used to fix and seal new buildings. However, it doesn’t deal with matching old construction issues.

a building made with bricks

Get Quick Block Repair Services With CF VICE Construction For Your Home

Masonry repair and masonry restoration are two sides of the same coin. One is generally preferred for older buildings and the other is good for newer buildings. Whatever the case, both are necessary to ensure that the building stays in top shape and lasts for a long time.

So, if you’re looking for someone to fix the brickwork and stonework on your home, check out the expert masonry repair services at CF VICE Construction in Gilbert.

We’ve been operating as a legitimate company in Phoenix, Gilbert, and Tempe for the past decade. Our experienced masons have been in this field all their lives, and their work is a testament to their skill.

Get in touch with us now for more information on our block wall construction services, mailbox installation, cinder block wall repair, etc., in Scottsdale, Phoenix, Tempe, and Gilbert.

You can also reach out to us via email, to get more information on our services and a quote on your project.





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