Fortune Restoration specializes in brick repair in Chicago and its suburbs, repairing and restoring contemporary and historical homes, as well as commercial buildings. Our services include brick repair, mortar crack repair, stone repair, mortar matching, chimney and fireplace repair, mortar cap repair and masonry brick repair and restoration.
Determining the Scope of the Work
The first critical step in any brick repair project is to properly determine exactly what needs to be done. Some minor imperfections in your brickwork, such as fine hairline cracks or minor erosion of mortar, may not require repair work at all. However, delaying other more serious issues could lead to severe damage to your home or business and shouldn’t be ignored.
Common Brick Problems
Well-constructed brick structures can easily last a century or more, but their lifespan can be shortened considerably if some of the problems associated with aging are not addressed. Common problems include:
- Cracked brick – The cracking could be caused by foundation issues or by improperly constructed expansion joints that don’t permit the walls to expand as they age and absorb moisture.
- Aging mortar – Most mortar should last about 35 years, but beyond that point it often starts to crumble, weaken and crack. And cracks wider than 1/16 inch (the thickness of a dime) allow moisture to penetrate the wall, damaging the interior structure and contributing to mold and mildew.
- Chimney damage – A fireplace and chimney add to the appearance and value of your home. But like walls, the mortar joints in chimneys become damaged due to harsh weather conditions, and if left unrepaired, moisture can penetrate the interior of your home, and the chimney could collapse.
- Bulging structural wall – A structural wall is one that contributes to the support of the building, as opposed to a brick veneer which is just the outer skin of a structure. Over time, in both homes and commercial buildings, as the foundation and mortar age and moisture accumulates, one or more walls may begin bulging. This is a very dangerous condition which could lead to the sudden and catastrophic collapse of the structure.
These are just a few of the problems associated with aging brick, and if you have any of these, ask for help. For any kind of brick repair in Chicago, call Fortune Restoration at (847) 647-2500 and let one of our masonry experts provide a free, no-obligation inspection and estimate of needed repairs.