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How Winter Weather May Impact Your Masonry

delprete masonry winter weather may impact masonry

Learn how winter weather may impact masonry and what to do about it.

Winter weather can cause damage to a number of everyday items and objects. The frigid temperatures and moisture present in the ice and snow that can fall during winter can also impact your masonry building. Masonry chimneys are often most vulnerable to water damage. While your masonry structures are designed to last many years, the harsh winter weather can be unforgiving. If you don’t inspect your masonry for problems like cracking and leaning, you may miss problems that become much larger once spring arrives. If you notice any of the following problems, contact the masonry professionals at DelPrete Masonry for attentive inspections and repairs. 

Cracking and the Freeze-Thaw Cycle

The freeze-thaw cycle is a natural process that occurs when water freezes and melts repeatedly. This happens most often when temperatures fluctuate above and below freezing. Because masonry materials are porous, the freeze-thaw cycle can impact masonry constructions. This means they absorb water every time it rains or snows. When the temperature drops below freezing, moisture inside the bricks and mortar joints freezes and then expands. When the weather warms, the water thaws. The force of the thawing can be so strong that the mortar joints crack and break apart. After several cycles of this, your masonry can experience significant damage. 

Brick Discoloration 

Discoloration is a common issue that can occur in your building’s masonry during winter. At first look, discoloration may not appear to be a big deal, but this problem can indicate a more severe problem. Discoloration can result from water infiltration into the masonry, producing staining and discoloration on the surface. A building with this condition may be unsightly and detract from its overall appearance. But more significantly, it can signify a more serious problem with your masonry. The structural integrity may be compromised if winter weather moisture has infiltrated the building. 

Leaning or Tilting

Leaning or tilting can occur when the foundation of a building shifts or settles due to changes in the soil caused by the freezing and thawing cycle. This can cause your building’s walls to tilt or lean, indicating serious structural damage. If the issue is left unaddressed, leaning or tilting can lead to more substantial problems, including: 

  • Cracked foundation
  • Collapsed walls
  • Unstable structure 

If you are concerned about how winter weather may impact your masonry, contact DelPrete Masonry. We can recommend the safety precautions to take and visit your building for inspections if you notice any concerning changes. 


Whether you are ready to start your next masonry project or are still hesitant and have questions, Del Prete Masonry is here to help. We have the experience and expertise to get it right the first time. Questions? Want to visit some of our residential or commercial projects? Ready to set up a consultation? Feel free to give us a call at 410-683-0650 or visit us online. We are happy to serve Baltimore City and County, Harford County, Carroll County, Anne Arundel County, and Howard County. To see examples of our work and to keep up with our new and exciting projects, be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

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