Masonry is the practice of using brick or stone in construction, and for those that own a brick- or stone-front home, masonry work helps maintain a well-kept exterior and stylish interior. Sometimes, a touch-up or repair might be needed to keep the building in good shape. Here are the top signs that you need masonry work done on your house.
Also known as bowed brick, this occurs when sections on brick on an exterior wall begin to stick out or fall inwards. This is usually caused when moisture has gotten trapped behind the brickwork and causes the concrete to warp or shift. This then forces the bricks to move outwards. Other times, moisture leaks into wood, plaster, or other porous material, weakening it and allowing the bricks to cave in.
If you notice bowed brick, you can be sure that something is going on behind the bricks that needs your attention.
A compacted brick is one that, due to pressure and exposure to the elements, has lost its original shape. Bricks that have become compacted might look bent or cracked. This irregular shaping removes a lot of the stability from the wall and causes other bricks around it to become compacted as well. Another way compacted bricks cause a problem is that there will inevitably be a hole or large crack that develops around the compacted bricks, allowing water and pests inside, causing further damage to the home.
Efflorescence and Staining
When temperatures are low and humidity high, with lots of rain and morning condensation, a building can experience efflorescence. This is caused when soluble salts rise up through the brick and concrete materials to be released through the porous brick surface. When this moisture dries, the salt remains as a stain. If treated early, a simple pressure-washing will do the trick. However, neglecting these salt stains for so long will allow them to become calcium carbonate, which is much more difficult to clean and usually requires professional masonry services.
Cracking is one of the most obvious signs that your brick building needs masonry work done. It’s always a good idea to attend to cracks as soon as possible. If left to continue, expensive damage could be caused. For example, vertical corner cracks may not pose much structural danger, but it will allow a lot of moisture in during heavy rains, which will lead to bowed bricks, damage to interior wood and plaster, and even the introduction of harmful molds.
If you’ve noticed some irregularities in your home’s brickwork and think you might need some masonry work completed, the experts with Bruno Guerriero Construction are happy to help. Contact us today.