How Do You Repair Damaged Brick?
Brick has been adding charm to Nashville homes for hundreds of years, as well as to a lot of new homes. Still, regardless of its durability, brick tends to deteriorate gradually and loses its ability to repel certain elements like frost, snow, and rain. Consequently, it becomes less effective in preventing dampness and moisture over time.
If you feel the bricks on your home are starting to break, crack, or peel, it is imperative to repair your brick face damage at its earliest before it becomes an even bigger issue. If you’re looking for an experienced bricklayer or mason for brick repair in Nashville that can repair damaged bricks most professionally and effectively, you’ve come to the right place.
Signs Your Brick Wall Needs Repairing
Most repairs to the brick houses’ exterior tend to address concerns with pointing, which tends to crumble and recess over time. It is quite natural for bricks to wear out with time and show signs of age, especially if you own a Victorian-style home.
Still, natural aging is not considered much of a problem. In fact, it only tends to make the brickwork look more beautiful.
It is, however, a concerning matter when homes start to experience issues with either single bricks or groups of them. Structural problems such as sagging or bulging walls call for serious attention as they may point towards costly and extensive repairs to your home.
When single bricks start crumbling or breaking down, it’s called “spalling” or “blowing.” This is often a result of the damage caused by water getting in and having no way of getting out.
Damp and wind-swept rain and ice can cause trouble with the bricks when a tiny crack or damage to the pointing allows the moisture to get in. Thus, this results in flacking or damaged bricks, which will, in time, fall away.
The most evident sign your brick facing requires some tweaking is when you start noticing the damage. Damaged brick facing may appear like:
● Broken/crumbly bricks
● Peeling bricks
● Chips or cracks in the brick
● Missing bricks or pieces
Even if you observe the slightest damage, it’s recommended to tackle the problem straight away. A tiny chip or crack in the brick can worsen in no time and result in more severe problems.
1. The first solution is to excavate any sort of damaged brickwork back to the unaffected parts and patch up the remnants. This technique is ideal for minor damages and is not that costly. Once the damaged bricks are removed, fillers can be used for patching up the affected area using either a lime mortar mixed with brick dust for the most perfect color matching or sealing the damaged area with a clear sealant and applying a filler or breathable paint on top of it.
2. The second solution is only to be considered when the brick damage is so vast that the entire brick face needs to be removed. In this scenario, the damaged brick needs to be replaced. The most popular technique is the addition of a “slip,” which is a half brick cut lengthways. This is wet, inserted in the gaps formed by the removed spalled brick, and sealed with mortar. The pointing is then formed to match that around it.
Based on the extent of the brick damage, there are two ways this matter can be solved: you can try to repair the damaged bricks on their own or hand it over to professionals who have years of experience and knowledge and will undoubtedly do a great job.
The second option is unquestionably your best bet, as the brickwork is not something an amateur can do. While it may seem easy to patch small areas of chipped bricks, there is always the risk of creating a messy and untidy look if you attempt to repair large areas.
How to Repair Damaged Brick in 4 Steps
If your house bricks are crumbling, flaking, or falling apart/spalling, you need to remove them and replace them with new bricks to protect your home from the elements. You need the right set of tools and materials to repair damaged bricks.
Moreover, it is crucial to ensure the safety of everyone working on this project as there can be a lot of small particles and dust floating around, even with minor repairs. As a result, here are the items required:
● A rough pair of gloves
● A mask to prevent breathing in dust
● Ear protection
● Good-quality safety goggles
● Dye of mortar
● Stiff brush
● Large bucket
● Ladder or a stable platform to stand on
Before starting, you must ensure the wall is prepared for the repairs and that the source of the water damage has been resolved. This is because there’s no use repairing the damaged wall if the water damage occurs again.
Start by chipping away the damaged bricks (if any) but do not throw them away. Instead, these small pieces can be used later in the repairs. You should also clean any holes or cracks with water to ensure no debris, dirt, or dust can obstruct your new mortar.
The cracks should be cleaned out using a brush. This will also remove the remaining brick powder. A ladder or a stable platform can be used to work if the bricks are high up.
Once the safety precautions have been followed and the damaged wall has been prepared for fixing, it is time to take the project to the next step: preparing the mortar mixture and applying it to the damaged bricks to repair.
1. Prepare the Mixture
The mixture to be prepared might vary slightly depending on the chosen combination. However, the process will generally be the same. This step requires mixing the mortar and sand together, the ratios usually being 25% of mortar and 75% of sand.
Once the materials have been mixed, a quarter gallon of water must be added to the mixture and then mixed again. A specific dye of mortar can also be added to make it look more similar to your existing color of bricks.
2. Apply Mixture
Once the mixture is complete, the next steps must be performed relatively quickly as it tends to dry out quickly. The sand and mortar mixture is to be scooped up with a trowel and gently applied to the bricks. You must ensure to fill in the holes or cracks entirely with the mixture, and do not hesitate to fully pack it in.
3. Smooth It Out
Once the gaps have been packed in with the mortar, it is time to smooth out the mixture to ensure it is at level with the other bricks. If not, the repaired bricks will stick out from the other bricks. The chipped-off pieces from the damaged bricks can be used here and stuck back into the mortar. This helps conceal the cracks almost perfectly.
4. Clean the Bricks
Once the brick has dried, typically after a couple of hours, the brick facing must be cleaned off using a damp sponge. This helps get rid of any excess mortar. After this step, you should let the brick settle for a few days.
Should You Hire a Professional for Brick Repair or Do It Yourself?
Repairing damaged work is a skilled job, mainly if it involves the use of power tools. Hence, it is best to let a professional do the job. While an average handyman or DIYer can fix the brick face damage on their own, especially when there's minor damage, they must ensure they are willing to invest in the right materials.
If you do not use the right sealant, mortar, paint, or tools, you risk significantly damaging your bricks and wall. But despite everything, repairing large portions of your home or working with mortar can be challenging, even for the most experienced DIYers. For instance, sliding a new brick into the hole is one of the trickiest steps.
An average person may find it tricky to get the mortar neatly around the new brick, as it requires skill. This is where you need to call in an expert to do the work effortlessly and provide a seamless finish.
Professional bricklayers or masons know all the dos and don’ts of brick restoration and refurbishing. They have the right set of products and tools at hand to get the job done much quicker than an average homeowner.
They also know how to tackle more significant problems like efflorescence and issues with missing bricks, which may be beyond your realm of knowledge. This is why you should opt for a trusted professional such as Handyman Goodlettsville, TN, to repair damaged brick.
Handyman Goodlettsville TN – A Trusted Professional to Handle Your Brickwork
Every Nashville business or homeowner may once in a while experience some sort of damage that requires repairing. The best thing is to call us, and we’ll get it sorted for you in no time. So, if you are looking for a multiservice shop for brick repair in Nashville, or any sort of home repair and improvement, look no further.
Over the years, our home repair service has established quite the reputation throughout Goodlettsville and its neighboring areas. We pride ourselves in offering brilliant repairing services and delivering premium quality workmanship.
Our handyman services include:
● Drywall Repair
● Roofing Repair
● Deck Repair
● Siding Repair
● Door Repair and Replacement
● Electrical Repair
● Rain Gutter Repair
● Wood Rot Repair
● Fencing Replace and Replacement
● Soffit Repair and Replacement
● Fascia Repair and Replacement
● Window Installation
● Gutter Cleaning
Our home repair experts are high in experience in the remodeling industry and have undergone numerous hours of training in home repairs and remodeling. Whether you have a small roof or a wood rot repair, you can rest assured our professionals have you covered. Contact us, and our team will get in touch with you.