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Posts Tagged ‘ Masonry repair ’

Common Types of Masonry Repair

Friday, December 21st, 2018
Common Types of Masonry Repair

Read on to learn more about some common types of masonry repair.

Although masonry is known for its strength, longevity, and structural integrity it does require professional maintenance and inspection. Masonry structures are known for their stately beauty and require regular maintenance and repair. Read on to learn more about some common types of masonry repair.   (more…)

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

 

Signs That Your Chimney May Need Repairs

Friday, May 18th, 2018

 

If your chimney is damaged, it could lead to water damage and even cause a fire hazard.

You may not check your chimney often, but it is a good idea to do so every now again to make sure it is still in good shape. With varying weather conditions,  you never know when damage could have been done. A damaged chimney can be dangerous and lead to fire hazards, so you don’t want to ignore it. Here are some signs that your chimney may need repairs.

Damaged Mortar Joints

Mortar is what holds bricks together. If the mortar joints are damaged, that could mean the chimney is severely damaged because it exposes the bricks to more moisture. If water gets into the small cracks in masonry, they can become larger. If  you don’t address this problem, your chimney could eventually collapse.

Rusted Firebox

If you see rust on the firebox or damper, that is a sign that moisture is getting to the chimney. If the damper becomes harder to operate, that could be a sign that it is rusting so you want to take a closer look if this occurs. Rusting can lead to the flue tiles cracking, which is very dangerous because it allows more heat to come in, which could cause a fire.

Spalling Bricks

Spalling is when water gets into the brick (or any masonry material) and causes the surface of the masonry to peel off. This is easier to spot than the other signs because pieces of masonry will begin to fall off. You want to address this as soon as you notice it because the chimney will eventually crumble completely.

Cracked Crown

The top of the chimney is one of the most important parts because it is the first layer of protection against the elements. Cracks in the crown allows water to get in and will eventually make the cracks larger, leading to spalling. You can prevent this altogether by waterproofing the chimney crown or the entire chimney.

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.

Caring for Your Decorative Concrete During Winter

Wednesday, October 26th, 2016
decorative concrete

Make sure you protect your decorative concrete features this winter.

It’s starting to get cold again, and winter can really wreak havoc on decorative concrete. Besides the weather itself being a hazard, harsh chemical de-icers can actually damage concrete and landscaping details. If your business features beautiful decorative concrete, it’s important that you take steps to protect your investment. Here are a few tips for caring for your decorative concrete this winter. (more…)

Masonry Repair for Chimneys

Friday, April 8th, 2016
masonry repair

Masonry repair can restore an old and decrepit chimney.

Chimneys are known for durability, but that durability can lend homeowners to ignore masonry repair needs. Chimneys perform several important functions, and one that is deteriorating can be a safety hazard. As long as you keep up with maintenance and masonry repairs, however, you can extend the lifespan of your chimney and ensure it works properly. (more…)

Importance of Professional Masonry Restoration

Monday, March 16th, 2015

FoundationStone and brick masonry provide for long lasting, structurally sound, and impressive architecture. However, as long lasting as masonry may be, older masonry structures may still need masonry restoration for a number of reasons. The original mortar holding the masonry together may not have been well made, acid rain may have taken a toll, physical weathering, or freak accidents can all damage masonry enough to require masonry restoration.  If you own or operate a historic or otherwise venerable masonry structure it’s important that you get professional masonry restoration for your property. Professional masonry restoration can return structural stability, revive your masonries appearance, and protect the historic quality of the structure. Poorly done restoration may devalue the structure, or worse, cause more damage. (more…)

Signs You Have a Bad Masonry Foundation

Friday, January 9th, 2015

Foundation

Your home’s masonry foundation is incredibly important to its long-term survival. Without a solid foundation, you’re home or business will swiftly crumble and sink into the ground. That’s why it’s important to be on the lookout against foundation damage. Foundation damage is typically caused by moisture and will manifest in a number of ways. Del Prete Masonry is here to help with some of the most common signs of a bad foundation.

Crooked Windows and Doors

Door and window installers do their utmost to put in their wares so that they’re completely level. If they start to move out of alignment, it’s most likely because your masonry foundation has started to move. If your doors and windows become very difficult to open and close, or even show signs of damaged glass, it’s highly likely that the foundation in that region of the house has started to go bad.

Cracked Walls and Sloped Floors

If the level of your home’s floor starts to change, it’s almost certain that the foundation beneath it has started to settle, however this can be difficult to notice, especially with carpet. If your floors are uncarpeted, try dropping a marble and seeing if it rolls in an area you thought was flat. A sinking masonry foundation may prompt the developing of cracks in your drywall, particularly drywall near windows and doors. Be sure to look out for ejected drywall screws/ nails and baseboard gapping.

External Cracks/ Wall Bulges

While minute cracks are not unusual in masonry foundations, walls, and footers, be on the lookout for large, patterned cracks that seem to keep growing. If you see clearly rectangular patterns of cracks in your foundation masonry, or you notice unusual bulges in the foundation walls, the ground beneath it could be shifting. It’s also worth paying attention to your masonry chimney, if you spot cracks or damage on it, the frame of your house could be unstable.

Misc. Signs

Oftentimes, a masonry foundation will be set on top of posts and beams, if an inspector finds that these are leaning, the house has probably changed its position. If you spot water underneath your house or find that the ground seems wet on one face of it but dry on another, you could have drainage problems that need fixing. Taking care of these issues can nip masonry foundation damage in the bud.

Need To Repair Your Masonry Foundation?

Call Delprete Masonry. As Maryland’s foremost experts on masonry repair, construction, and demolition, our skilled teams have what it takes to quickly and accurately assess your masonry foundation for any problems or structural weaknesses and can offer fast and affordable repairs. Your house is your most prized possession and a masonry foundation is one it’s most important systems, so why not take good care of it?

To find out more about your masonry repair options, please contact our office today at 410-683-0650 or email us at mike@delpretemasonry.com. We serve Baltimore City, County, Harford County, Carroll County, Anne Arundel County, and Howard County. Keep up with our blog for masonry related information, and follow us on FacebookTwitter, and Google+.

Masonry Repair: Protecting Your Masonry Chimney

Thursday, December 4th, 2014

masonry chimneyWe often take our chimneys for granted. After all, there’s usually little reason to give them special attention. They do their job and we let them do it. However a masonry chimney is far from the passive, easily ignorable household system that we might treat it as. Over time and after routine exposure to moisture and the elements, chimneys can degrade and potentially become safety hazards. Delprete Masonry, your Maryland masonry repair expert, is here with some of the ways you can protect your masonry chimney, and what you can do to prevent them.

Install a Chimney Cap

One of the most effective methods for preventing water damage to your masonry chimney is using a chimney cap (also called a rain cover). Any roofing or masonry professional will tell you that chimney caps are a vital part of any chimney lining system. Chimney caps provide other benefits as well. They can prevent sparks from escaping, and help stop birds and other wildlife from nesting in the chimney. Chimney caps are constructed from corrosion resistant material and will protect your masonry chimney for years to come. Consult a masonry repair expert in Maryland about installing a new chimney cap.

Replace Your Chimney Crown

A chimney crown is the uppermost portion of a masonry chimney which seals the top of the chimney, directing water away from the flue, preventing erosion of the chimney’s brick and mortar. Many masonry chimneys are constructed with flawed crowns built from non-weather resistant mortar mix. An excellent chimney crown should be built from weather-resistant mortar mix and should project over all sides of your masonry chimney by at least two inches. A damaged masonry chimney crown should be replaced by a trustworthy team of Maryland masonry repair experts.

Repair Weakened Mortar Joints

Deteriorated mortar joints on your masonry chimney can become prime locations for moisture entry. Correctly made mortar joints, ones without gaps or missing mortar, are constructed specifically to repel water away from the joint. Damaged mortar can start to absorb water and crack, threatening your chimney’s structural integrity. If you notice that your mortar joints are starting to crack you should hire a Maryland masonry repair company to have them repointed.

Need To Repair Your Masonry Chimney?

Call Delprete Masonry. As Maryland’s foremost experts on masonry repair, construction, and demolition, our skilled teams have what it takes to quickly and accurately assess your masonry chimney for any problems or structural weaknesses and can offer fast and affordable repairs. Your house is your most prized possession and a masonry chimney is one it’s most important systems, so why not take good care of it?

To find out more about your masonry repair options, please contact our office today at 410-683-0650 or email us at mike@delpretemasonry.com. We serve Baltimore City, County, Harford County, Carroll County, Anne Arundel County, and Howard County. Keep up with our blog for masonry related information, and follow us on FacebookTwitter, and Google+.

What is Tuckpointing and How do I do it?

Wednesday, October 15th, 2014

tuckpointingAlso commonly referred to as repointing or pointing, tuckpointing is the process of removing and replacing deteriorated mortar joints. It’s an important process that every owner of a masonry structure should be aware of, as it’s routinely used to reinforce and repair Maryland masonry to ensure that it stays looking good, and more importantly, safe.

Preparing to Tuckpoint

Tuckpointing is a labor intensive process and should only be attempted by an experienced Maryland masonry professional, or someone with substantial masonry experience. Before beginning to tuckpoint it’s vital to conduct a thorough analysis of your masonry to determine exactly where the problem areas are, and what mortar joints need replacing. You’ll also have to determine if the joints need cleaning, and the age of the masonry you’re working with.

Creating Tuckpointing Mixture

  1. Decide whether or not you need power tools. Saws and grinders are normally used to remove mortar.
  2. If you’re using mechanical tools you’ll need to set up extra proctection to avoid damaging the masonry.
  3. Don proper protective gear,
  4. Remove the old mortar up to a depth of 3/8 inches to ½ inch, or until you strike firm mortar. Warning: Do not remove more than one third of the depth of the masonry unit, this is very unsafe.
  5. Remove dust and debris by brushing, rinsing with water or blowing the mortar joint with air.
  6. Select the type of mortar that is going to be used.
  7. Mix the additives to match existing mortar colors.
  8. Place all ingredients in a mixing box.
  9. Thoroughly mix all ingredients.
  10. Add half the water needed for the mix.
  11. Mix until the mortar forms a thick paste, thick enough so a ball can be formed, without having mortar flow.
  12. Let the mix set and hydrate for about two hours.
  13. Add water to increase workability. Warning: Adding too much water, will make the solution too runny, and thus unfit for use.

Applying the Mixture

  1. Using the tip of a trowel, pack the mortar into the joint until it is full.
  2. Scrape away excess mortar until the joint is flush with the masonry surface.
  3. After the mortar has hardened a bit, strike the joints with a joint strike tool, first vertically, then horizontally.
  4. Make sure to keep the mortar damp and covered with a sheet of plastic for 3 days after the procedure.

Need Tuckpointing or Other Masonry Repair in Maryland?

If you’re looking for a reliable Maryland masonry company that can take care of this laborious and technical process for you, contact Del Prete Masonry. Our masonry restoration professionals have the experience and history of satisfied clients to prove that we’ll get the job done right, and cost-effectively. To get started with your tuckpointing or other masonry repair project, please contact our office today at 410-683-0650 or email us at mike@delpretemasonry.com. We serve Baltimore City, County, Harford County, Carroll County, Anne Arundel County, and Howard County. Keep up with our blog for masonry related information, and follow us on FacebookTwitter, and Google+.

Accident Highlights the Importance of Masonry Repair in Maryland

Wednesday, October 8th, 2014

On October 6th at 1:00pm in a town situated in East Yorkshire, England a 61 year old man was unfortunately crushed to death when winds from a passing storm blew masonry off an amusement arcade which then fell upon him. Neil Dean, a taxi driver whose vehicle was also crushed by the falling debris, described the incident saying thatmasonry repair

“[The Masonry] came down on the top of the car as [the old man] was walking towards the amusement arcade. He was straight outside my car and I watched him go down. I feel so, so sorry for his family.”

“He was minding his own business and just walking towards Pleasureland Amusements. The falling masonry came from the pointing on the top of the building. That’s where it all came from.

“It quite a new building and it’s been there for under ten years. Apparently somebody saw it wobble a few weeks ago. It’s not an old building.”

The local fire department is currently investigating to see if any of the construction was at fault. The hearts at Del Prete Masonry go out to the victims of this unfortunate accident. We would like to take the time to underscore the importance of proper masonry repair and maintenance in preventing these kinds of tragedies in the future. As this incident illustrates, masonry repair is important even for newly constructed buildings and while the winds in Maryland rarely equal the torrential weather of England, we see our fair share of storms and dangerous weather.

Conducting routine masonry repairs and restoration is vital to the safety of everyone who works in your structure and the general public. As a Maryland property owner it is ultimately your responsibility to ensure the safety of your building by seeing that masonry repairs are performed routinely or by hiring a reputable and reliable masonry company for the initial construction.

Del Prete Masonry

If you’re looking for a reliable Maryland masonry company that can virtually eliminate the odds of these kinds of accidents, contact Del Prete Masonry. Our masonry restoration professionals have the experience and history of satisfied clients to prove that we’ll get the job done right, and cost-effectively. To get started with your commercial masonry repair project, please contact our office today at 410-683-0650 or email us at mike@delpretemasonry.com. We serve Baltimore City, County, Harford County, Carroll County, Anne Arundel County, and Howard County. Keep up with our blog for masonry related information, and follow us on FacebookTwitter, and Google+.

Source: The Yorkshire Post