Though brick and stone can last a century, the mortar between them deteriorates more quickly. Loose mortar or cracked mortar joints can allow water to seep behind the brick to inflict severe damage and threaten the stability of the chimney structure.
Tuckpointing, also known as repointing, is the process by which deteriorating mortar between the bricks is replaced. Essential to this process is the act of grinding out the old and weakened mortar with a diamond-blade concrete saw. New mortar is then applied, in a color that matches the old mortar, restoring the integrity of the chimney structure.
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Before: Deteriorated mortar joints are crumbling and sand-like, leaving massive area for the elements to penetrate and inflict damage to the chimney structure. (Job details: Bloomington, MN; February 2017)
During: In order to properly reconstruct mortar joints, the old mortar must first be removed. If new mortar were to be applied over the old joints, it would not properly adhere and would quickly deteriorate. After removal of the mortar, we clean the mortar joints with air pressure and then water to completely remove all debris and open the pores of the brick. This practice, as well as use of the diamond-blade saw, ensures proper adhesion of the new mortar.
After: Crown has been completely rebuilt, including expansion joints and drip edge. Tuckpointing has restored structural integrity to the upper chimney.