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Posts Tagged ‘ masonry cracks ’

Common Causes of Masonry Cracks

Friday, June 8th, 2018

It’s good to know what caused your masonry cracks so that you know the best way to repair them.

Masonry materials are pretty durable, but they are constantly enduring the various elements of nature. Over time, the masonry can begin to wear down and even crack. There are several different causes of masonry cracks, so here are a few to help you narrow down the cause of yours.

Shrinkage & Expansion

These masonry cracks usually appear within the first year of construction. This is because masonry expands and contracts during the curing process. With concrete block, water evaporates as the block cures, causing it to shrink. With brick masonry, the moisture is absorbed while it’s curing, causing expansion. Joints are typically built in walls to accommodate this shrinkage or expansion, but improper joints can lead to cracking. Shrinkage/expansion cracks typically aren’t serious and widen as they move upward.  

Uneven Settlement

Settlement occurs early after a building’s construction and typically is caused from an improper foundation. This typically occurs in the early years of a building’s construction or if there’s a change in underground conditions. Cracks from uneven settlement typically appear at corners and openings and follow a diagonal line. Bigger cracks can be a problem, but small cracks are only a real issue if moisture can get through them.

Masonry Piers

Masonry piers sometimes rotate or settle differently than when they started. In addition, cold weather can cause them to frost or be damaged by the freeze/thaw cycle. This could lead to the piers themselves cracking. The cracks typically aren’t serious but a shift in masonry piers can cause the wood components of masonry to lose their bearings.

Sweeping/Horizontal Cracks

If you notice these types of cracks, you probably want to get it fixed as soon as possible. Causes of sweeping cracks include things like vibrations from machinery or vehicles that are close by, improper backfilling, or freezing of the soil next to the wall. These cracks are a sign that the foundation wall itself is breaking, so masonry repairs or restoration may be necessary.

Contact Del Prete Masonry Today for Your Masonry Needs!

If you are ready to upgrade your home or commercial building with professional masonry installation or replacement, Del Prete Masonry has the experience and expertise to get the job done right for the right price. To explore our residential and commercial services and set up a consultation, please give us a call at 410-683-0650 or contact us online. We currently serve Baltimore City and County, Harford County, Carroll County, Anne Arundel County, and Howard County. To see examples of our work and get more updates, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Pinterest

 

Tips For Repairing Masonry Cracks

Wednesday, April 11th, 2018

Masonry cracks may seem minor at first, but they can expand and become a big, costly problem.

Even the most well-made masonry can occasionally crack, and while most of us are content to leave a few seemingly cosmetic issues, it’s important to repair any cracks as quickly as possible. Even the smallest masonry cracks can lead to serious, costly repairs down the line. Why not take a few precautions and save yourself some time and energy in the long run?

Small Wall Cracks

If you have a wall crack of less than 1/16th of an inch, your fix is fairly simple. After carefully cleaning out the crack, use a gel or cream adhesive with either butyl rubber or silicone rubber. These are sold at most hardware stores in tube format labeled as caulking compounds. Using a small brush with stiff bristles apply the caulking mixture straight from the tube, using the brush to ensure that the entire crack is filled.

Medium Wall and Driveway Cracks

When you have a larger crack or one that is frequently walked on, caulking is not the best option. Caulking in high traffic areas can result in the caulking getting disrupted, making it a less than optimal repair method. For these repairs you’ll need to pick up patching cement, which is made from a mix of cement, sand and is reinforced with vinyl. This type of cement is typically sold as a powder to be mixed with water. When applied in layers, this will perfectly patch narrow cracks.

Large Wall Cracks

In the event of a large wall crack, you may want to contact your masonry company for professional help. You will want to ensure your wall is still in serviceable condition before putting forth the effort of patching it. Large cracks can be repaired easily enough, however you’ll want to make sure it’s not indicative of a larger problem before you patch it. Once you’ve had it looked over, you can pick up some sand-patching cement to begin your repair. It’s important to note that areas patched with this method need to be over a half inch deep and of a significant size. To start, clean out the area of the crack. You’ll want to chisel out the interior, removing any crumbling areas, while making the interior wider than the opening so that the cement can get a better grip. Make sure to remove any dirt and dampen the crack before applying the cement.

Large Pavement Cracks

When it comes to large masonry cracks in driveways, steps, or pavement a mix of simple powdered concrete is all you’ll need to make the repair. Simply mix the concrete according to the directions, pour it into the cracked area and use boards or etc. to hold it in place as it hardens.

For All Your Masonry Needs Look To Del Prete Masonry

If you need help fixing cracked masonry, Del Prete Masonry has the experience and expertise to get the job done right for the right price. To explore our residential and commercial services and set up a consultation, please give us a call at 410-683-0650 or contact us online. We currently serve Baltimore City and County, Harford County, Carroll County, Anne Arundel County, and Howard County. To see examples of our work and get more updates, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Pinterest.