How to Find the Right Masonry Contractor

Masonry contractorSome people find a masonry contractor by searching various terms on the Internet. Some ask friends. Some drive around their neighborhood looking for good examples of what they want. They get the contractor name and call. Others ask contractors they’ve used for a recommendation. Before you start calling the names on your list, identify what work you want done. Be as specific as you can be. For instance, do you need brick replacement, brick chimney repair, tuckpointing or capping concrete? You want to give the masonry contractor an idea of the size of the job and any special requirements.

Call the contractors and ask them to describe their business. Listen for how long they have been serving customers and for the size and duration of projects they’ve worked on. This will give you an idea if it’s the right fit.

Questions to Ask a Masonry Contractor

You may want to ask more questions to learn if this contractor is the best one for your work. Try these.

Do you have testimonials or recommendations from previous clients? A good contractor will supply you with names.

What mortar mix do you use? This may be important especially when restoration work is involved.

What preparation is needed? Make sure the cleaner used is appropriate for your masonry. You don’t want anything damaged by water or abrasive blasting.

Will cold or hot weather affect my masonry project? In cold climates like Chicago, tuckpointing is not recommended during winter since cold can damage the mortar. However, the area can be masked off with a tarp and positioned with heaters to protect it.

How will the joints be prepared for the new mortar? Ask about the use of power tools, which can damage masonry. Loose mortar should be raked out by hand and brushed, then watered down. This allows the new mortar to retain moisture as it cures.

What style of tuckpointing will be used? Concave, flat, European? Ask the tuckpointer to explain the difference between the three.

By asking these questions you will learn how to find the right masonry contractor for your tuckpointing or masonry job.

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About the Owner


John Gallagher

John Gallagher learned the craft of tuckpointing while in his late teens. His father, a first generation Irish immigrant and construction worker, encouraged his son’s entrepreneurial spirit. John earned a business degree from Loras College, and soon afterward he founded Shamrock Tuckpointing.

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