Re-pointing is not as easy as you may think…
Regardless if a wall is built from stone or bricks, mortar is still going to be used in both cases in order to fill the visible joints on its face. Generally, this is the same mortar that was used for joining the building material. The scope of these face joints is to not only protect the wall from the elements, but they also give it a very nice finish.
However, while professionals can easily repoint bricks on an old wall, lay people may have a difficult time doing it right. So how can they go about it?
Mixing up enough mortar for the job
The first step people should take is to consider mixing enough mortar that will help you finish the job. After that, homeowners need to inspect the wall and see if there are any plants that have been growing into it. If there are, they have to be carefully removed before work can start on the wall.
Removing the old pointing
Using a chisel and a hammer, the old pointing needs to be removed, but one should be careful when removing mortar around the windows, since it can cause them to not open or close anymore. It is very important that loose mortar be removed gently only by using the chisel without the hammer. As many homeowners can imagine, this is quite a messy job, so it is best if they use plastic sheets on the flooring so it does not get dirty or damaged.
Measuring the mortar mix
The new repointing needs to have a color that is consistent for the entire job and that is why it needs to be carefully measured out. At the end of the day, it is best if homeowners prepare more mortar than they actually need instead of preparing less, since this can lead to color inconsistencies.
Repointing the bricks
It is very important to keep in mind that repointing needs to be done from the top of the wall downwards. On the other hand, if the wall is solid, the first 50 centimeters without a damp proof course contain a lot of moisture and that is why this section needs to be given priority. As for applying the mortar, it should be applied from left to right, making sure it is pushed firmly every single time. After the mortar has been applied, it should be left until it almost dries completely. The drying process is influenced by the property’s position in relation to the sun and the weather, of course.
Use a wire brush
There will be some excess mortar to remove and this step calls for using a wire brush. It is best if homeowners leave a face joint that is a bit lower compared to the face of the wall. After the wall is carefully cleaned up, it leaves behind the beautiful face joints that clearly define the stones. It is now ready to face the possibly harsh weather for many years to come without the homeowner having to worry about repeating the job anytime soon.