Masonry Repair: Brick Maintenance Helps Avoid Major Repairs
Owners of brick buildings have a lot to worry about these days: the cost of taxes, insurance, and other “must-haves” keeps rising. Sold as a maintenance-free exterior, many owners don’t realize that brick requires regular inspection and periodic maintenance. Putting off routine inspections and minor repairs can seem like a good idea in the short run. However, in the case of masonry repair, you’ll likely pay the price.
For example, a brick chimney with cracked mortar or a deteriorated chimney crown is a fairly minor repair. However, once masonry starts to deteriorate, the rate of deterioration grows exponentially.
Chicago’s freezing and thawing cycles work to turn small cracks into crevices, quickly. Other forces may be at work as well, including rusted metal adjacent the brick, incorrectly formulated mortar, and moisture trapped behind painted or improperly sealed brick.
Left unattended, minor masonry problems can result in not only an unsightly appearance, but also in an unsafe structure that could potentially collapse or prevent proper ventilation. In the case of a chimney, a total rebuild may be necessary. Lack of knowledge about brick maintenance has serious consequences.
Sometimes the source of a masonry problem isn’t always obvious. For example, water that enters through a cracked chimney crown can leak down and cause problems elsewhere. Similarly, water in the soil can also move upward through capillary action. A masonry repair professional is trained to diagnose the source of the problem and provide a permanent solution.
If you are concerned, contact us and we’ll come out and take a look. An early assessment may prevent structural failure later.