In a world where people are constantly replacing things instead of repairing them, it’s nice to come across an old building that’s still standing. With age comes a history that is demonstrated very clearly in the architecture of these older buildings. We can learn from them and get a glimpse of life before televisions, the Internet, and Facebook. While older buildings tend to be in a state of constant deterioration, the ones that stand the test of time are those built with bricks. They are solid and strong enough to last hundreds of years, bringing beauty to everything that surrounds them.
Bricks are a great way to ensure that a building sticks around, but there are some qualms you need to address. Mainly, while bricks don’t deteriorate as fast as wood or other materials, they still do deteriorate. When brick buildings go years without any maintenance, there is a high possibility of the building failing, or collapsing. The older the structure, the worse the deterioration tends to be. That’s why you need to approach repairing brick that’s over 100 years old with care.
If a mason begins to repair brick that’s this old, there needs to be careful precautions taken in terms of mortars, precision, and above all, patience. This is why it’s so important to leave tuckpointing jobs to the professionals, especially with older buildings. However, keep in mind that just because a building is old doesn’t necessarily mean that it needs repairs or upgrades. Take a look at some of the most common signs that indicate deterioration.
Crumbling bricks are one of the easiest ways to tell if an older building is starting to deteriorate. When bricks begin to crumble, it’s pretty noticeable. The more of them that are in this state, the sooner you should act and make the necessary repairs. Walk around the building and keep an eye on the condition of the mortar and pointing. If there is anything that’s loose or missing, it’s a sign repair is needed. Again, the more severe the conditions are, the more repairs are needed. Another thing to look for are any cracks throughout the building, specifically trailing through an individual brick or across the mortar. Keep an eye on any bricks that look like they’re deteriorated either individually or in a clustered group. This could be a sign of water damage and may indicate deeper, more pressing structural issues.
If you or someone you know owns a brick building with history behind it and want to make sure it’s in the best shape possible, call a professional tuckpointing company as soon as possible. There is a point of no return with bricks and if you reach that point, you won’t be able to save the building. Instead, you’ll need to do a partial or complete tear down to make sure that the integrity of the building remains intact.
When you catch the damage in time, there are a number of ways that the building can be repaired. Damaged bricks are easily cut out and replaced by similar bricks or you can try and treat them using mortar. A thorough tuckpointing job can also add years on to the longevity of brick buildings. First, professionals come in and scrape out the damaged or falling mortar joints that are between each of the bricks. It takes some patience, but after it’s done a fresh, strong new mortar is put in place to strengthen the integrity of the building. As an added benefit, tuckpointing will boost the aesthetics of the building itself. There are even special design elements that can be implemented during repair.
Like we mentioned, brick that’s over 100 years old is fragile and could crumble at any second, especially if the deterioration is severe. If you want the building to survive, at least in some aspect, there needs to be an outstanding level of precision. That’s where we come in.
If you’re looking for a professional that is experienced enough to handle aging brick, call the professionals at Chicago Tuckpointing Inc. today. Each and every one of our team members is fully trained and has a collective 20 years of experience under their belts. We specialize in everything from brickwork on new and old buildings, repairs, and any restorations—especially in regards to historical buildings. Our customers always come first so you can expect outstanding services at unbeatable prices. Give us a call today at (708) 942-1951 or head on over to our website chicagotuckpointinginc.com.