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What is Brick Repointing? - Brick Building Conservation

The UK is renowned for the beautiful brick buildings scattered across its cities and countrysides. While these buildings align with the classic architecture of the country, they require regular maintenance to ensure they look their best and to conserve their integrity. 

If you are considering having the exterior of your brick property cleaned, we remind you to not forget about the brick pointing! When you bring back your brickwork to its original glory, you need to pay attention to the mortar as well to prevent irreparable structural damage.

What is Brick Pointing?

Brick pointing is the term that refers to the cement or ‘finish’ used between the bricks to seal the bricks together. The cement lines are named in this way because they used to be shaped with the point of the trowel.

It is important that the brick pointing of your building is done well and repaired when necessary. Old or damaged brick pointing can cause water leaks, sagging or other irreparable damage. Over time, weathering and decay cause voids in the mortar between the bricks. In older buildings where the mortar used was lime mortar, heavy rain can wash the lime out of mortar and weaken the bond it provides. You can prevent this by repointing your bricks in time and by obtaining advice as soon as you notice any form of damage.

What is Brick Repointing?

Repointing is the process of repairing and renewing the pointing in between your brick. This process replaces the old mortars and makes sure that the bricks are bonded together again. Repointing is essential for maintaining, protecting, and conserving brick and stone buildings.  Mortar can represent  15% of the overall surface area of brick buildings, displaying the structural importance of brick repointing.

 It may be that over time you see cracks in the mortar of your property. It can also be that you notice gaps between the mortar and masonry. These holes and gaps need to be repaired as soon as possible, especially in winter. During wintertime or rainy periods, it can be that water gets into the joints. When the water freezes it expands and can erode the bricks. This causes irreparable damage. The brick pointing needs to be repaired in order to prevent further damage.

Further, if you plan on renewing your brickwork to its original look, the appearance of the mortar should also be considered. While Doff cleaning and the use of a TORC/JOS machine can considerably restore the building's aesthetic, repairing the building's mortar is required for a complete transformation.

What is a Brick Repointing Service?

When we repoint the mortar in between the bricks of your building, our team of specialist stonemasons will first examine the property. During this examination, they will try to understand how the mortar has been damaged but looking at things like:

●     Loose or missing bricks

●     Damp surfaces on the masonry in dry weather

●     Unusual stains or plant growth such as moss or algae

●     Water infiltration on your interior walls

 

Next, our engineers clean your existing brick pointing through our Brick Cleaning service, which involves either a doff steam cleaning or cleaning with a TORC/JOS machine to provide a clean slate to work on. If damaged bricks need to be replaced, then our technicians utilise their colour-matching expertise to ensure the repointing looks flawless. This colour-matching requires a specialist’s eye for detail, colour and precision; which is why Spectrum’s specialists have the ability to work accurately with the highest skill level on brick structures. Our expertise is complemented by using specialist equipment which removes damaged mortar with care and then applies replacement mortar using cordless pointing guns which efficiently inject new mortar into the joints. 

We always make sure we restore a building’s façade into its natural colour. Therefore we mix the correct amount of cement with colouring. After the bricks are cleaned and repointed, our team can apply a transparent coating. We do this to make sure the bricks and masonry are watertight to prevent any new water damage. With a coating, the bricks of your building will stay clean longer and stains can be removed more easily.

Why Work with Spectrum?

All our brick pointing assignments are done by trained experts, who have a variety of skills and can deliver the best service. Moreover, our team of stonemasons are IRATA trained, meaning they are qualified and skilled at utilising abseiling to gain complete access to your brick or stone property. When we work via rope access, we are able to save you up to £30K. Due to this skill, we do not need scaffolding which saves you costs and time.

Are you interested in having the pointed restored on your property? Get in touch and allow our team of operatives to transform the face of your commercial or residential building!

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