If you’ve never heard the term tuckpointing before, you’re not alone. There are a lot of people who are unfamiliar with this term, but understand what it involves. In fact, if you live or work in a building that has even a minimal amount of brick, someone has probably done some tuckpointing on it before.
Tuckpointing refers to the process of maintaining the mortar that is used between layers of bricks. It is commonly used in the construction industry and deals with almost all of the work that involves masonry – brick walls, buildings, chimneys, patios, or even outdoor décor. If it has brick, it will eventually need tuckpointing. This process most frequently occurs when these bricks begin to show signs of deterioration, primarily in the mortar. Sometimes this deterioration is easy to spot, sometimes not so much. The bottom line is, if you think that the mortar between your bricks is showing signs of aging or deterioration, you should call a professional for an inspection. If you wait too long, buildings and structures may pass the point of no return and a full demolition will be needed to avoid serious injury or infrastructure problems.
When you hear the words commercial tuckpointing, it’s simply referring to the professional process that’s used to perform tuckpointing on an old or deteriorating building. This can be anything from homes to office buildings, old churches to factories. Regardless of the building, if it has brick that shows signs of wear and tear, it will need commercial tuckpointing.
The problem is that commercial tuckpointing is a meticulous job that shouldn’t be tackled as a DIY project on the weekend. It requires a lot of experience, skill, and patience. The process involves going in and scraping out any old, unsound mortar and replacing it with new mortar. This reinforces the integrity of a building and also helps increase the overall aesthetics.
You can use commercial tuckpointing to give a building a new look by incorporating two different colors of mortar. First, a professional will take a mortar that closely matches the color of the bricks themselves. They’ll go in and fill a layer with this color, making the bricks appear closer together. Afterwards, they take a highly contrasting color of mortar and use a thin line to create a joint appearance. While this also increases infrastructure, it’s primarily used for aesthetic purposes.
If you think your professional building or residential home may be in need of commercial tuckpointing, take a second to perform your own inspection. Walk around the building and look for signs of wear and tear. If you see crumbling mortar, chalky appearances, or unparalleled bricks, call your masonry for a professional inspection.
Luckily, tuckpointing doesn’t need to be done too often. If you have a newer building, you should be fine – in fact, if it was built well and the mortar was done correctly, it can last up to 50 years. If you’re in an older building or home, try and get it done every 25-30 years to avoid any expensive structural repairs or complete demolitions down the road.
If you’re located in an area that has a high exposure to water and extreme weather conditions – where freeze-thaw cycles wear down your mortar – you may have to get this process done more frequently.
As we mentioned before, it’s probably not the best idea to tackle commercial tuckpointing as a DIY project. It takes a lot of precision to ensure that your end product is strong, durable, and actually pleasing to look at. If you’re adamant on trying it yourself, give it a try, but you should call in the professionals if you want a bit more peace of mind.
When searching for your masonry contractor for commercial tuckpointing, make sure that you first and foremost, find a company with certifications, proof of insurance, and a high level of experience. These are non-negotiable qualities and you shouldn’t use a company that is lacking in any of them.
If you’re looking for a quality company that you can trust, look no further than Chicago Tuckpointing Inc. We employ fully trained professionals who are serious about their jobs and always respect the properties they work on. At Chicago Tuckpointing, we specialize in new masonry work as well as commercial tuckpointing, updates, and restorations. If you’d like to find out more, or schedule a consultation, give us a call today at (708) 942-1951 or head over to our website chicagotuckpointinginc.com.