How to Re-Point a House

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Brick homes are naturally weather-resistant and provide a good resale value. The bricks act as a natural insulator and keep the home cool in the summer and warm in the winter. However, the mortar in bricks is subject to deterioration. You can easily fix this, though, with the proper tools and a couple of hours on a weekend to lengthen the life of the bricks.

Things You'll Need

  • Wire brush
  • Tuck-pointing file
  • Bag of brick Mortar
  • Hawking trawl, to hold the mortar
  • Caulking trawl
  • Tool jointer
  • Wet the area to be re-pointed. Brush with a wire brush to remove any lichens or plant material as well as dirt, then allow it to dry.

  • File away the damaged mortar with the tuck-pointing file. It is always best to go into the good mortar about 2 inches to create a better bond. Wash out the area with water again, and allow it to dry.

  • Mix mortar according to the instructions on the bag. The consistency should be that of toothpaste. Place a small amount on the hawking trowel.

  • Take the caulking trowel and scoop up some of the mortar. Place the mortar in the crack between the bricks. Even it out with the face of the bricks.

  • Run the tool jointer over the areas where you placed the mortar. This will force excess mortar out of the joint and give a nice clean finish. Allow the mortar to dry for 24 hours. After that, lightly spray it with water and allow it to dry. This aids in the curing process.

Tips & Warnings

  • Make sure that you are going to have 48 hours of dry weather before starting the re-pointing.

References

  • "How Your House Works: A Visual Guide to Understanding & Maintaining Your Home;" Charlie Wing; 2007
  • "Homeowner Basics (Black & Decker Complete Photo Guide);" Jodie Carter, Matthew Palmer, Steve Wilson, and Jerri Farris; 2008
  • "Time-Life Books Complete Home Improvement and Renovation Manual;" Bob Vila and Time-Life Books; 1991
  • Photo Credit brick house image by david hughes from Fotolia.com
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