Historic Restoration and Preservation of Churches

Historic churches have a certain charm that you just can’t ignore. They’re beautiful and tend to increase the aesthetic value of a neighborhood. Using a delicate combination of brick, beautiful wood and stained glass churches are unlike any other building. Unfortunately, many churches have been abandoned and left to brave the test of time. In addition to the financial struggle to maintain a church, it can be difficult to attain outside fundraising in order to preserve these types of buildings.

If a church has been abandoned for a while, a historic restoration may be needed to get it back to working condition, but this is isn’t always easy. Between the congregation and community, sometimes there aren’t enough funds to hire professionals. In recent times, people have started to take notice and many communities are prioritizing the historic restoration and preservation of churches. Old buildings tell stories and people have begun to realize how important those stories are to their city’s history. This is great news for historic churches.

In restoration and preservation, the first areas to address are the stained glass and the masonry involved in old churches. If no one does anything to take care of either of the two, deterioration will go past the point of no return and a demolition will need to be done.

The best way to combat this type of deterioration is to make sure that historic buildings stay occupied. When they’re occupied, people will take care of them. This is why many cities have been pushing for art venues and non-profits to take residence in abandoned historic churches. So how exactly is a historic restoration or preservation done and when can you tell it’s time? Keep reading to find out.

The Process

Historic restoration starts with a consultation and general inspection of the historic church that will need work. Depending on the level of damage and your budget, your contractor may discuss options for complete or partial restoration. They will assess this by first searching for damaged as well as missing bricks. This is a telltale sign of deterioration but it is fixable if caught early enough.

In addition to damaged/missing bricks, your contractor will examine the mortar joints, or the spaces between the bricks, to check for signs of deterioration. After this initial assessment, the real work begins.

Tuckpointing or repointing can be done to renew any eroded areas and increase the structural integrity of the building. Damaged bricks can be addressed and if there are any missing bricks, as long as the deterioration process isn’t too far along, they can be replaced. If the building is salvageable, tuckpointing and repointing, in addition to brick repair, is the majority of what’s needed. Afterwards, most masonry contractors will use a special coating in order to combat extreme weather and any premature aging. Different types of coatings will be used depending on the building material used.

If the building is too far deteriorated, it may be necessary to perform a demolition or excavation. While this isn’t ideal, it may be unavoidable.

Finding the Right Masonry

If you know of an old church that needs a restoration or preservation job, the trick is to find the right masonry. You’ll want someone who cares about the process and will do a great job at a fair price. If you’re a caregiver or the owner of a church and you start to see signs of deterioration, finding a masonry contractor sooner rather than later will save you a ton of money.

When searching for your masonry, make sure you find someone who has the experience and passion for historic restoration and preservation. The professionals at Chicago Tuckpointing Inc. are a great option. Our team of highly experienced tuckpointers and professional masonry contractors are dedicated to completing each and every job with passion and integrity. With over 20 years of experience, the professionals at Chicago Tuckpointing Inc. will handle your job from start to finish, making sure that you’re satisfied every step of the way. Each person on our team is specialized in masonry work and has experience doing restorations on churches.

We understand how important it is to maintain the charm that your church once held, which is why we take our jobs very seriously. We promise to handle your restoration process with no hidden costs and impeccable service. Give us a call today at 708-942-1951 or visit our website chicagotuckpointinginc.com to see some of the work that we’ve done and request a consultation.